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MACMILLAN & CO., Limited 









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TENLEY / v'l" 




Set up and electrotyped. Published September, 1913. 
Reprinted October, 1913 ; February, 1914; January, 1915; 
August, October, November, 1916 ; July, December, 1917. 

J. 8. Cushlng Co. — Berwick & Smith Co. 
Norwood, Mass., U.S.A. 

!>• O, PUBLIC LIEiJ. Ry 

t^' Ai *~? >'^ U f\ "^ 



In this book I have sought to tell clearly and impartially the story 
of human achievement in what is now the United States, from the 
earliest traces of man's existence to the present time. Out of the 
multitude of facts which may be considered within the domain of 
American history, those have been recounted which seem best suited 
to explain the progress of the people as a nation. The influence of 
physical environment has been discussed in the opening chapter, 
which also deals with the primitive inhabitants. An attempt has been 
made to give the colonial period its proper unity and show in what 
manner the colonies were a part of the general British scheme of im- 
perial government. At the same time one must remember that it is 
American and not British history which concerns us, and for that 
reasor the narrative must not neglect the individual colonics. From 
the end of the colonial period the dominant interest is the progress of 
events which have to do with the common cause of independence, and 
after that with national development. 

Much thought has been given to the proper distribution of em- 
phasis between the various historical factors. Political institutions 
are the most conscious expression of the national will. They 
determine the form of the stofy which the historian has to tell. But 
social and economic conditions and the actions of leading men give 
color and contour to the figure and decide whether it be attractive or 
unattractive, vivid or unimpressive. This volume contains at inter- 
vals summaries of the habits and social progress of the people, while 
throughout it seeks to present the decisions of congress and adminis- 
trations in the matters which relate to the most important phases of 
popular welfare. It is believed that, if well done, it thus becomes in 
the most vital sense a social history. My aim has been to lay the 
necessary foundation for those who wish to pursue further the subject 
of American history in whatever phase they may be interested. 

In a work like this it is impossible to discuss new historical evi- 
dence. I have had to content myself with what has already been done 
by patient and faithful investigators. I have drawn from the results 
of their labors freely and gratefully. It has also been necessary to 
omit many things which I should have desired to include had greater 
space been allowed by the plan to which the book must conform. It 
seemed best to deal only with the main currents of history, and to 
follow these with considerable fullness rather than encumber the narra- 
tive with many details. If some of my readers are disappointed 


through the omission of something they expected to find, I hope they 
will be consoled by finding that what has been attempted has gained 
in amplitude of treatment. 

The bibliographies at the ends of chapters are intended as an aid 
to those who wish to read further than this book can carry them. 
They are classified with respect to subjects, and while they are not 
critical, no book has been mentioned which does not contain useful 
information, although some of them must be perused with discrimina- 
tion. It is suggested that the investigator suppplement the informa- 
tion herein offered by consulting Larned, The Literature of American 
History (1902), Hart, editor, The American Nation, 27 vols. (1904- 
1908), as well as special bibliographies. The books mentioned under 
the caption, For Indepetident Reading, are popular rather than scien- 
tific, but they generally contain reliable information. It is hoped that 
they may be of value to students who wish to read American history 
during vacations and to others who read through their own initiative. 

Finally, the author's thanks are due to Professor Marshall S. Brown 
of New York University, who kindly read and criticised the completed 
manuscript, but who is in no way responsible for the errors herein 

J. S. B. 

16 Rue Chalgrin, Paris, 


Chapter I. The Continent and its Early Inhabitants: 

Physical Factors in American History 1 

Natural Resources 4 

Early Inhabitants ........... H 

The Indians 13 

Indian Culture ........... 15 

Chapter II. The Discovery and Exploration of America : 

Events and Ideas leading to the Discovery 23 

The Achievement of Columbus 27 

Exploring the Coasts of the New World 31 

Exploring the Interior 37 

Chapter III. The First English Settlements in the South: 

The Gentlemen Adventurers 41 

The Beginning of Virginia ......... 45 

Better Times in the Colony . . . . . . . . . 50 

The Settlement of Maryland 52 

Chapter IV. The Settlement of New England 

The Plymouth Colony 

The Massachusetts Bay Colony 
The Settlement of Other New England Colonies 
New York under the Dutch .... 
Early Relations of the Colonies with England 


Chapter V. Colonial Progress under the Later Stuarts, 1660-1689: 

Charles II and the Colonies ......... 80 

The Stuart Reaction ........... 88 

The Colonies under the Later Stuarts, 1660-1689 . . . . , 92 

Chapter VI. Colonial Development, 1690-1763 : 

Development of the Colonial Conflict ....... 99 

Typical Colonial Controversies ........ 101 

Georgia Founded 109 

Growth of New France . . . . Ill 

The French and Indian Wars 115 

The Last Conflict between the French and English in North America . 121 



•^Chapter VII. Social Progress in Colonies: 

The Conditions of Settlement 134 

Laboring Classes . 137 

Colonial Industry 140 

Trade 142 

Race Elements in Colony Planting 145 

Religion in the Colonies 148 

Education and Culture in the Colonies 153 

Local Government in the Colonies ....... 155 

Paper Money in the Colonies 157 

'Y' Chapter VIII. The Causes of the Revolution: 

The Principles at Stake 161 

Grenville's Policy 162 

Growing Irritation ........... 169 

Continental Organization and Attempts at Adjustment .... 176 

Chapter IX. The American Revolution : 

The Declaration of Independence ........ 186 

The Campaign around New York, 1776 188 

The Campaigns of 1777, Philadelphia and Saratoga .... 192 

The Alliance with France 198 

Minor Events in the North, 1778-1782 200 

The War in the West 203 

The Navy in the Revolution 204 

The Campaign in the South, 1778-1781 206 

The Treaty of Peace , . . 214 

Civil Progress during the Revolution 217 

Chapter X. The First Years of Peace, 1783-1787 

Financial Embarrassments ......... 222 

Industry and Trade after the War 225 

Forming a New Society 228 

The Western Lands 231 

Popular Dissatisfaction 235 

Chapter XI. Making the Constitution : 

The Articles of Confederation 238 

Moving toward a Stronger Union 240 

The Adoption of the Constitution 247 

Nationality and State Integrity in the Constitution .... 250 



Chapter XII. Washington's Presidency — A Period of Organiza- 
tion : 

The Work of Organization 256 

Financial Reorganization ......... 259 

Adjusting Foreign Relations 261 

The United States and the European War 266 

The Whisky Insurrection 267 

Political Development under Washington 269 

Chapter XIII. Adams and the Downfall of the Federalists : 

The Political Character of the Administration 276 

The Quarrel with France 278 

Overconfidence of the Federalists ........ 283 

Overthrow of the Federalists ......... 287 

Chapter XIV. Internal History and Foreign Affairs under 
Jefferson and Madison : 

Republican Reforms .......... 291 

The War with Tripoli 295 

The Purchase of Louisiana 296 

Dissension in the Republican Party ....... 300 

The Schemes of Aaron Burr 303 

Relations between England and the United States .... 306 

Jefferson's Reply to Europe ......... 309 

Chapter XV. The War of 1812: 

Origin of the War 313 

The Struggle for Canada 321 

Operations at Sea 326 

The British Campaign on Chesapeake Bay 329 

The War on the Gulf Coast 331 

New England Discontent 335 

Chapter XVI. Social Development: 
Growth of the West and Southwest 
Industrial Development .... 
Slavery made Sectional .... 
Religious Development after the Revolution 
Exploration in the Far West . 
Early Constitutional Interpretation 


Chapter XVII. The Last of the Virginia Presidents : 

Reforms of 1816-1817 ... 363 

Party Cleavage under Monroe . 367 



The Acquisition of Florida ....... . . 368 

The Missouri Compromise 371 

The Monroe Doctrine 375 

The Election of 1824 , . . .377 

The Presidential Election of 1825 379 

Chapter XVIII. The Administration of John Quincy Adams : 

Party Formation under John Quincy Adams ...... 382 

The Tariff and the Development of Sectionalism ..... 384 

The Election of 1828 388 

Chapter XIX. Problems of Jackson's First Administration : 

The New President in Charge 392 

Internal Improvements Checker 394 

Division in the Jacksonian Party ........ 396 

The Election of 1832 403 

Chapter XX. Jackson's Presidency Completed : 

The End of NuUification . 407 

Jackson's " War " against the Bank 411 

Foreign Affairs ........... 415 

The End of Jackson's Presidency . 422 

Chapter XXI. Early Period of the Slavery Controversy, 1831- 

The Antislavery Agitation 428 

Van Buren's Presidency .......... 432 

The Administration of Tyler 435 

The Maine Boundary and the Webster- Ashburton Treaty . . . 437 

The Annexation of Texas and the Occupation of Oregon . . . 438 

The Election of 1844 441 

Polk's Administration 445 

The Slavery Question in a New Form 450 

The Compromise of 1850 454 

Chapter XXII. Social and Industrial Development, 1815-1861 : 

Growth of Population and the Results 461 

The Influence of Great Inventions 463 

The Indians 465 

Social Development in the South 468 

The Development of Democracy in State and Nation .... 472 

The Progress of Education ......... 476 

Gold in California ........... 480 

The Panic of 1857 482 



Chapter XXIII. Events leading to the Civil War, 1850-1860: 

Overthrowing the Compromise of 1850 ....... 485 

The Struggle for Kansas 489 

A New Party and the Election of 1856 493 

The Dred Scott Decision 497 

The Lincoln-Douglas Debates 499 

The John Brown Raid , 502 

The Election of 1860 504 

Chapter XXIV. The Outbreak of the Civil War: 

War or Peace ? ........... 511 

Lincoln and Secession .......... 514 

Preparations for War .......... 516 

The Bull Run Campaign 518 

Relations with Great Britain . . ....... 521 

Chapter XXV. The Western Campaigns : 

A Bifurcated Invasion .......... 526 

Three. Preliminary Operations, 1861 ....... 526 

Grant's Campaign on the Tennessee, 1862 ...... 527 

Confederate Counter- Movement in Tennessee and Kentucky . , 529 

Vicksburg Captured 530 

The Campaign for Chattanooga ........ 532 

The Campaign against Atlanta ........ 535 

Sherman's March through Georgia and the Carolinas .... 539 

The War beyond the Mississippi ........ 541 

Chapter XXVI. The War in the East, 1862-1865: 

McClellan's Peninsular Campaign ........ 545 

Pope and Second Bull Run ......... 550 

The Campaign of Antietam ......... 553 

The Battle of Fredericksburg. ........ 555 

The Battle of Chancellorsville ........ 557 

The Gettysburg Campaign ......... 558 

From the Wilderness to Petersburg ....... 563 

The End of the War 564 

Federal Naval Operations ......... 569 

Chapter XXVII. Civil Affairs during the War: 

Enlisting Troops, North and South 572 

Federal Finances .... 

The Progress of Emancipation 

Political Parties during the Civil War 

The War Powers of the President . 

The Southern Problem and Southern Efforts 




Chapter XXVIII. Reconstruction — the National Side 

Two Possible Methods of Reconstruction 
"'■■ Lincoln's Plan of Reconstruction 

Johnson's Plan of Reconstruction 

Affairs in the South 

Johnson's Hopes 

The Fourteenth Amendment . 

The Reconstruction Acts of 1867 

An Appeal to the Supreme Court 

The Impeachment of President Johnson 


Chapter XXIX. Reconstruction — the Southern Side: 

Social Conditions in the South 619 

Congressional Reconstruction in Operation ...... 622 

The Ku Klux Klan 627 

Triumph of the Southern Democrats ....... 630 

National Reconstruction under Grant ....... 633 

Interpreting the War Amendments ....... 635 

Chapter XXX. Party History, 1865-1877 
Political Conditions after the War . 
The Election of 1868 .... 
Foreign Affairs under Johnson 
Grant's Political Mistakes 
The Presidential Campaign of 1872 
Political Decay under Grant . 
The Election of 1876 .... 


Chapter XXXI. Economic and Diplomatic History, 1856-1877 : 

Financial Reorganization ......... 660 

The Legal Tender Decisions ......... 663 

Industrial Progress .......... 664 

Resumption of Specie Payment ........ 668 

Diplomatic Affairs under Grant ........ 669 

Chapter XXXII. The Development of the Far West : 

The Rocky Mountain Region 676 

The Transcontinental Railroads 680 

Indian Wars ............ 683 

The Sioux War of 1876 687 

A New Indian Policy 690 

Chapter XXXIII. Political and Financial Readjustment, 1877-1881 : 

Hayes and his Party 693 , 

Course of the Democrats 


CONTENTS • xiii 


The Bland- Allison Silver Coinage Law 697 

Resumption of Specie Payment . 6!fe, 

The Election of 1880 701 

Garfield's Short Presidency 703 

Chapter XXXIV. Political and Economic Reform, 1881-1897:,, 

Civil Service Reform 707 

Ballot Reform , .... 711 

Tariff Reform 712 

The Election of 1884 716 

Cleveland and his Party 719 

Tariff Reform under Cleveland 721 

The Republican Party in a New Stage 723 

The McKinley Tariff and the Surplus 724 

The Tariff Legislation of 1892-1897 727 

Chapter XXXV. Great Industrial Combinations: 

Combinations as Historical Factors 731 

Railroad Combinations 732 

Trusts ............. 736 

Bank Consolidation .......... 740 

Combinations of Laborers 741 

Chapter XXXVI. Last Phases of the Silver Movement : 

The Bland Law in Operation ......... 746 

The Last Years of Harrison ......... 748 

Cleveland and the Panic of 1893 753 

Selling Bonds to protect the Surplus 755 

The Bryan Campaign for Free Silver, 1896 758 

Chapter XXXVII. A New Phase of American Diplomacy : 

Importance of the Pacific ......... 764 

The Samoan Incident, 1887-1889 765 

The Fur Seal Controversy 767 

The Mafia Incident 767 

Relations with Chile . 768 

Hawaiian Annexation 771 

Chinese Immigration 774 

America and Japan ........... 775 

The Venezuela Boundary Dispute ... o ... . 777 



Chapter XXXVIII. The War with Spain: 

Spain and Cuba . 782 

American Intervention 786 

The Work of the Navy 790 

Land Operations against Santiago ........ 795 

The Destruction of the Spanish Squadron ...... 799 

Reflections on the War in Cuba ........ 802 

Peace Negotiations 805 

Subsequent Relations with Cuba ........ 806 

Chapter XXXIX. Expansion and its Problems : 

The Philippines as an American Colony ...... 809 

An American Colonial Policy 813 

An Isthmian Canal ........... 814 

The Canal at Panama .......... 817 

Canal Construction ........... 821 

American Diplomacy in the Orient . . . . . . . 822 

The Alaskan Boundary 825 

The New Monroe Doctrine 826 

Chapter XL. The Administrations of Roosevelt and Taft: 

Roosevelt's Corporation Policy 829 

Roosevelt's Second Term 832 

Taft's Administration 837 

The Presidential Election of 1912 ........ 843 

Legislative Progress under Taft ........ 849 



Physical Features of the United States . 9 

Early Explorations 30 

The North during the Revolutionary War 184 

The Northwest during the Revolution 202 

The Revolutionary War in the South 208 

The United States at the Close of the Revolution 216 

California and Mexico, 1846 448 

The United States during the Civil War . . . . . . .528 

Operations in the East ........... 550 

The Battlefield of Gettysburg 559 

The Transportation Problem of the South ....... 574 

The Far West 678 

Territorial Development [doiible page) ........ 792 

The Panama Canal 820 



Bunker Hill and Boston 181 

Campaign around New York ......... 189 

Valley Forge, Philadelphia, and Brandywine 193 

The Saratoga Campaign . 196 

The Siege of Yorktown 213 

The Canadian Border ........... 322 

Washington and Vicinity . 329 

The Erie Canal ............ 366 

The Gulf Region' 369 

The Vicksburg Campaign 532 

Operations around Atlanta 537 

The Santiago Campaign ... c 797 



Physical Factors in American History 

The history of the United States, like that of other countries, has 
been modiiied by physical environment. Nature has determined 
where man should begin to penetrate the continent, his 
routes of communication between the various portions of V^^ ^^' 
the country, and the resources out of which he has built Nature, 
up the national wealth. Climate has limited achievement, 
or aided it, the soil has determined the form of labor, and rainfall has 
marked out the area he inhabits. In some respects he has overcome 
natural conditions, but in most things he has had to conform his ac- 
tions to them. Speaking generally, nature has been favorable to man 
in the United States. Says Shaler: "There is no area, in either of 
the Americas, or for that matter in the world outside of Europe, where 
it would have been possible to plant English colonies, that would have 
been found so suitable for the purpose." 

The area of the United States, exclusive of Alaska and the island 
possessions, is 3,026,789 square miles, which is less than that of Europe 
by 725,000 square miles. Great irregularities mark the 
coast line of Europe and facilitate political subdivision. iE^®":*® ? . 
Our own coast line is relatively regular, and most of the unity, 
interior is one vast river system. The Appalachian Moun- 
tains are not a formidable barrier between the coastal plain and the 
interior, since they are easily penetrated in Pennsylvania and fall 
away entirely in Georgia and New York. The Rockies are much 
higher, but they were not reached before the day of railroads, and 
through means of this invention most of their difficulties disappeared. 
It has therefore happened that the people from the Atlantic to the 
Pacific constitute one nation. They are relieved of the burdens which 
opposing interests lay upon the powers of Europe, and the size of the 
country has given it great influence in international affairs. 

Through this extent of territory there is a wide range of climate, 
but the mean temperature is mild. The fact that a great plain extends 
from the Gulf of Mexico to the Arctic Ocean without the 
interruption of a mountain chain accounts for a wide varia- variations 
tion in temperature for a given point. Through this means 
mighty currents of heated atmosphere are carried far northward in 


summer and cold waves come far southward in winter. As a result, 
Arkansas, for example, has the winter climate of Edinburgh and the 
summer cHmate of Spain, while Minnesota has summers like those of 
Venice and winters as cold as those of Scotland. The Pacific coast, 
protected from the disturbing force of the currents in the interior of 
the continent, has a more stable climate ; but the Appalachians are 
not high enough to shield in a similar way the Atlantic coast. 

In all parts of the United States there is adequate rainfall except 
near the Rocky Mountains. An area beginning with the eastern slope 
of this range and extending westward to the Sierra Nevada 
range is deficient in this respect. A large part of it yields 
grass for ranches, but one fourth of it is entirely arid and makes a 
great desert with no vegetation except alkali plants and prickly 
shrubs. Much of this general region may be reclaimed by irrigation, 
and in 1902 Congress provided means of reclamation which will even- 
tually bring these parts within the area of fertile production. Two 
ocean currents modify the climate of the United States. The Gulf 
Stream on the east exerts an influence on the coast as far north as 
Cape Hatteras ; and the Japanese Current, sweeping down from 
Alaska, where its effects are marked, tempers the winters of all the 
Pacific slope north of Mexico. 

Means of water transportation are adequate. Harbors are nu- 
merous on the Atlantic coast, and rivers suitable for the ships of the 
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries are so well distributed 
The Atlantic ^y^^^ jj ^ jjj^g were drawn from Maine to Florida parallel 
System. with the coast and one hundred miles inland, there would 
hardly be a spot east of it which was more than a day's 
journey from water transportation. This rim of coast received the 
first colonies, and its natural advantages made easy the introduction 
of civilization. The plain west of it is traversed by several large rivers 
which by offering means of communication and an abundance of 
fertile bottom land marked out the lines of advance for future settle- 
ments. This took the frontier to the Alleghanies, to pass 
The Passage which three easy routes might be followed ; one around the 
]V«ss*issiD i northern end of the range to the lakes, another around the 
Basin. southern end, and another through central Pennsylvania to 

the upper waters of the Ohio. The Iroquois Indians held 
back immigration by the northern passage foi many years, and the 
Creeks and Cherokees did the same on the south, so that the first 
English advance across the barrier was by way of the central route. 
The Mississippi basin, as the central portion of the continent is 
called, is entered from the sea by three great systems of 
Interior water communication. One conies from the north by the 

Courses. ^t. Lawrence and the Great Lakes and gives access to 
the very heart of the central north. Another is the Missis- 
sippi and its tributaries. Its northeastern branches approach within 


short distances of the streams which flow into the lakes of the north, 
and its western and northwestern tributaries penetrate the broad 
western plains. A third system is the Alabama, which reaches the 
sea through Mobile bay. Smaller than either of the others, it never- 
theless covers a large and important region north of the Gulf of Mexico. 
The currents of most of these rivers make it difficult for sailboats to 
come upstream, and the earliest transportation was by flatboat down 
the river; but the invention of steamboats in 1807 put the navigable 
rivers of the country entirely under human control. 

The Pacific slope differs from the Atlantic slope in both harbors and 
waterways. Only four of the former are important : Puget Sound, 
San Francisco, San Diego, and the mouth of the Columbia 
river, which is dangerous. The mountains approach so Harbors and 
near to the sea that the coastal plain is too narrow for large ^hJ pac°fic 
streams ; but in Oregon and southern California they recede Coast. 
enough to allow the exit of two great rivers which gather 
their waters in the high grounds of the interior. One of these is the 
Columbia, which flows through a fertile and well-timbered valley, the 
home of a numerous people ; the other is the Colorado, whose course 
is twisted through an arid region, which can only hope for develop- 
ment through irrigation. 

Certain physical features have materially aided in the construction 
of artificial means of communication. After roads, which with their 
bridges were early made by the settlers to facilitate travel, 
canals were next undertaken, usually in order to reach the 
interior beyond the heads of navigation of the rivers. They generally 
paralleled small streams whose shallowness made them unfit for navi- 
gation. Philadelphia interests, seeking to reach the rich western 
trade which had its gateway at Pittsburg, planned a canal over the 
mountains. Starting from Harrisburg it followed the Juniata river 
to the base of the Alleghanies, where it was forced to stop. On the 
other side of the range it was resumed along the banks of 
the Conemaugh and Alleghany rivers to Pittsburg. The ^^^ Route 
ridge between these two links has an elevation of 2491 feet 
and a width of forty-two miles. Uncompromising advocates of canals 
proposed a tunnel throughout the whole distance, but a railroad was 
built instead. There were other attempts to reach Pittsburg from 
the coast, but the line just mentioned was the most continuous water 
route that was utilized. Its disadvantages were many, and it was 
used chiefly for freight, passengers preferring the quicker journey over 
one of the several post roads to the upper Ohio. 

When Pennsylvanians developed this line of transportation they 
had their eyes on a competing system in New York. From the Hudson 
at Albany to Buffalo is only three hundred and sLxty- three miles. 
Much of the distance is traversed by the Mohawk river, and the 
highest elevation is only four hundred and forty-five feet above sea 


level. To the north are the Adirondacks and to the south the 
Catskills. The valley is nature's gateway to the West, and as 
early as 1785 plans were considered for a canal through 
The Central ^^ In 1825 they came to fruition when the Erie canal 
Route. w^s completed from Buffalo, on Lake Erie, to Albany, 

on the Hudson. It had two branches, one to Lake 
Champlain on the north and the other to Lake Ontario, at Oswego. 
It conducted the commerce of a large area to the port of New York. 
The results were striking. In 1826 nineteen thousand boats and 
rafts were carried down these New York canals to the Hudson. Ship- 
building sprang up on Lake Champlain, Buffalo became a 
Results of depot for the furs and other products of the Northwest 
struction. which formerly found outside markets by way of the St. 
Lawrence, and the settlement of the lands south of the 
Great Lakes was given a great stimulus. In 1825 the freight rate 
from Buffalo to Albany was eighty-eight dollars a ton : twenty-six 
years later it was less than six dollars. The lake region was thus made 
tributary to New York, and out of this fact grew the industrial su- 
premacy of that city. Up to this time Philadelphia was the leading 
American city : it fought hard to retain its supremacy, and its control 
of the best road to Pittsburg was an important factor ; but access to 
the lake region was worth more in the future development of the coun- 
try than reaching the Ohio valley. When railroads were invented 
these two passes were still of great importance. One line followed 
the Juniata to Pittsburg, and two were built across the level Mohawk 
plain to Buffalo, where the lack of steep grades makes operating ex- 
penses relatively low. 

Natural Resources 

Natural resources have affected the history of the United States as 
much as means of communication. No colony could prosper without 
something which it could export for the accumulation of 
Early im- wealth. For the earliest comers such articles were furs 
Fu^r^and° ^^^ ^^^' They were in ready demand in Europe and at- 
Fisheries. tracted the attention of hardy adventurers before the New 
World was seriously thought of as a place for colonization. 
Fur traders and fishermen established temporary stations on the coast 
in advance of permanent settlements, and thus called the world's at- 
tention to the resources of the continent. 

Furs abounded in all parts of America, but they were better in the 
colder parts. The earliest traders came into harbors, 
Fur Traders usually at the mouths of rivers, where the natives met to 
^n ^e* In-*^^ barter skins for goods. As the trade developed they went 
terior. up the rivers into the interior, generally establishing trad- 

ing houses at the heads of navigation, as at Hartford on 
the Connecticut, Albany on the Hudson, and Richmond on the James. 


Next, individual traders went out from these centers to remote parts, 
gathering the furs from the natives rather than waiting for them to be 
brought to the stations. In every case the advent of settlements was 
the signal for the disappearance of the trade. To-day when the whole 
continent is known to man, furs are found only in the frozen parts of 
the north, where the climate forbids ordinary pursuits. In the in- 
terior, as well as on the coast, the fur trader marched in advance of 
the frontier. He explored unknown parts and revealed to the settle- 
ments the portions best suited for habitation, he discovered the best 
means of penetrating the interior, and he established important re- 
lations with the Indians. 

Even earlier than the fur trader was the fisherman. The many 
indentations of the Atlantic coast abound in mackerel and salmon ; 
but more important still was the cod, whose proper habitat 
is the coasts of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. At the ^^^elop- 
coming of the colonists this fish was found as far south as Fisheries, 
the cape which now bears its name. It was then already 
well known in Europe ; for enterprising fishermen from England and 
France were taking it on the banks of Newfoundland many years 
earlier. "The knob headed, richly fat, and succulent codfish," as 
Weeden calls it, is probably the most popular of our food fishes. Its 
special advantage is its excellent keeping quality when salted and 
dried. With mackerel it was w^idely sold in the Catholic countries 
of western Europe, where fish was demanded for use on Fridays. The 
poorer cod and mackerel were sent to the West Indies, where planters 
bought them for their slaves. The New England fisheries developed 
rapidly from the first and became the basis of an important foreign 

Taking the cod supported an important sea-going population. The 
eastern towns of Massachusetts — Boston, Gloucester, Marblehead, 
Salem, Ipswich — were the centers of the industry. With 
the establishment of fishing on the coast the cod disap- f^^-^^^L"^ 
peared in that region ; but the New Englander followed it cq^. 
north as far as the Newfoundland banks. A ship of fifty 
tons and a crew of seven were considered adequate for the business ; 
and if fishing were good, they might expect to take six hundred quintals 
a year. The men served for shares, and the owner of the boat got a 
share for his capital. A ship's company was selected for steadiness, 
agility of mind and body, and companionable qualities. The associa- 
tion was apt to be renewed from season to season, and it promoted 
the development of reliable and efficient cooperation. The fisheries 
bred sailors for the merchant marine and later for the navy. With 
the advance of the eighteenth century capital played a relatively larger 
part in the cod fisheries; larger ships were used, and wealthy 
men who furnished outfits became a chief factor in the in- 
dustry. Out of this form of fishing grew whaling, which the hardy 


New Englanders carried to the North, and South, Atlantic, and 
finally to Pacific waters. The trade in cod and mackerel had the pe- 
culiar advantage that it brought specie into the colonies at an early- 
day, when it was much needed. 

Another important resource in the United States is lumber. Forests 
originally covered the entire Atlantic coast and all of the Mississippi 
basin but the prairies, which occurred in restricted areas north of the 
Ohio and in a large territory from the Rocky Mountains to a line some- 
what west of the Mississippi. The Pacific coast itself is 
Forests and ^^jj wooded, but the rainless region from the Sierras to the 
Rockies is largely without forests. The settlers attacked 
the forests with avidity. Masts for all the shipbuilding countries of 
Europe, staves and lumber for the treeless West Indies, and naval 
stores from the Carolina pines were some of the first forest products. 
As the frontier was extended inward from the coast lumbering as- 
sumed better organized forms, saw mills lined the rivers, and forest 
products became of greater importance. From lumbering the col- 
onists quickly proceeded to shipbuilding, making excellent vessels for 
their own use and after a while for sale in Europe and the West Indies. 
As the frontier proceeded westward the attacks on the forests became 
most profligate. Thus a large part of the timber of the country was 
wastefully consumed before the people came to realize the importance 
of preserving it. 

In fertility the soil of the United States compares favorably with 
that of Europe. It is peculiarly rich in limestone, which is favorable 
to the growth of grain and grass. A large proportion of 
° ' the land is tillable, and even the mountain ranges of the 

Atlantic slope may be brought largely into cultivation through suffi- 
cient effort. There are few great swamps, the Dismal in North Caro- 
lina and the Everglades in southern Florida being the only consider- 
able ones on the Atlantic coast. The openness of the country made 
settlement easy in the early stages, and it has facilitated the extension 
of the frontier through the interior. 

All the territory north of the Susquehannah and half of that north 
of the Ohio was once in the grasp of a great glacier. The effects were: 
I, to leave the soil full of stones which must be removed 
PeriS^"^ before it could be cultivated successfully. This was par- 
ticularly true of New England, where, it is estimated, an 
average of thirty days' labor was necessary to clear of stones each 
acre of land ; 2, Glaciers leave behind them a tough clay soil which 
requires years to bring it into profitable production, but 
The New when once subdued it is not easily exhausted. Shaler 
England asserts that he has never known this kind of soil to be- 
come worn out through cultivation. The Indians were 
not able to subdue the New England soil, and they were, therefore, 
not numerous enough seriously to impede the early attempts at colo- 


nization. The whites succeeded better, but the difficulty was so great 
that agriculture progressed slowly in that region. Many of the people 
turned to other forms of industry, especially to trade and, in later years, 
to manufactures, for which their excellent water-power was adapted. 
This struggle with nature, it is believed, has also stimulated thrift, 
self-restraint, and resourcefulness in the inhabitants ; and the estab- 
lishment of manufactures has promoted town building. The social 
results have been important. 

In the South, on the other hand, the tillable soil was fertile, though 
more easily exhausted. It was also abundant and cheap, so that the 
settlers had a tendency to take up large holdings. To work 
these plantations it was necessary to have a permanent q°\^^^ 
labor supply, persons who would not become landowners 
themselves in the presence of the unusual opportunity for acquiring 
farms. No such laboring class could be had from Europe, but it 
could be found in Africa, and the result was negro slavery. Slave 
plantations became the rule, and they were so profitable that manu- 
facturing was excluded, trade was reduced to simple forms, and the 
South was given almost wholly to agriculture. 

In the Northwest the prairies were easily and rapidly settled. Im- 
migrants quickly became rich farmers. Never was the American 
frontier more prosperous and more democratic. Cities j ^h w t 
were built rapidly, and railroads, commerce, and all the 
other forms of a complex society were suddenly reared upon the 
luxuriant state of agricultural prosperity. In California a favorable 
soil and an equable climate have united to support a great fruit raising 

The lands adjacent to rivers have played an important part in the 
history of the country, especially on the Atlantic coast and in the 
lower Mississippi basin. They were most accessible to the 
early inhabitants and had greatest fertility. They were ^^^ Land' 
the first lands reduced to cultivation, and when they were 
occupied the settlers turned to the tributary streams, where the bottom 
lands were less extensive. When the black borders of this drainage 
skeleton were taken up and made arable, the higher regions between 
them were attacked. The best plantations were the river plantations, 
and because their owners were rich, and could afford to own large 
tracts, here were found the large plantations. This was somewhat 
true of the Connecticut, and essentially true of the Hudson and of all 
the Southern rivers. 

Raising their own food has never been a problem for Americans, 
since all parts of the continent are fertile enough for that, -. , „ . 
— and the colonists, once past the initial scarcity due to ^°°^ 
difficulty of adjustment to a new location, had no anxiety 
on this score. They were more concerned with having some staple 
crop for export which should serve as the basis of wealth. New Eng- 


land could promise little in this respect. Some corn, vegetables, and 
beef could be spared from home consumption, but high freights to 
Europe forbade sending them thither. The West Indies and the fish- 
ing stations of the North offered but a small market, and the middle 
colonies were competitors for it. With the increase of transportation 
facilities much grain was sent abroad from the latter colonies, the 
precursor of a trade which with the development of the West has 
become a great factor in our industrial life. 

Three staple crops developed in the colonial period ; tobacco in 
Virginia and Maryland and rice and indigo in South Carolina and 
Georgia. Late in the eighteenth century sugar became a 
staple in Louisiana. All were profitable and facilitated 
the rapid development of the regions in which they were grown. 
After the invention of the cotton gin in 1793 cotton became the lead- 
ing staple of the country. It was grown throughout the South below 
Virginia and Kentucky from the foothills of the Alleghanies to the 
Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico. With the development of the coun- 
try many other crops have become vastly important. Of them wheat 
and corn are of first rank and must be called staples in a large part 
of the Mississippi basin. 

In the days of settlement Indian corn was a most prevalent food 
supply. Besides having excellent nourishing qualities, it was more 
easily cultivated in newly cleared ground than any other 
grain. Following the custom of the Indians, the colonist 
removed the undergrowth from the forest, killed those trees he did not 
care to uproot, and dropped the seed in the spaces between stumps and 
dead trunks. European wheat could not have grown or been har- 
vested under such conditions. Corn has, also, these other advantages ; 
it remains uninjured on the stalk for weeks after it is ripe, it keeps well 
in indifferent barns, its grain is excellent food for man and many of the 
domesticated animals, and its fodder is good winter forage. More- 
over, it grows well in all parts of the country, whereas wheat cannot 
be raised with profit in most of the Southern states. 

The mineral resources of the United States, which are abundant, 
were little exploited before the revolution. In that period men were 
satisfied to clear land, build roads, and develop trade, 
Deposfts. naturally the first tasks to be done in a new country. Our 
revolutionary period happened to coincide with one of the 
turning points in the world's industrial history. The steam engine, 
the blast furnace, and power machinery came into existence at nearly 
the same time. Following them came a great demand for coal and the 
metals used in ordinary forms of industry, and the rapid 
Iron ^^ development of manufactures in the early part of the nine- 

teenth century gave an added impulse to the process. The 
mining of coal and iron on a large scale opened the new period. When 
these two minerals are found together and close to water transporta- 



tion they furnish the basis of great industrial activity. They 
represent enormous values in themselves, they support a large body 
of laborers, and they enter so extensively into modern production 
that many manufactories are sure to spring up in the neighborhood. 
The result is rich and densely settled areas, numerous cities, and the 
various important influences which naturally accompany them. 
Most parts of the United States are near coal deposits, but the richest 
coal-bearing area is that lying chiefly on the western slope of the Al- 
leghanies extending from northern Alabama in the southwest to 
southern New York in the North. This belt at the southern part is 
about thirty miles broad, but near the northern end it spreads out in 
a great bulb reaching from Cumberland, Maryland, to Newark, Ohio. 
The deposit in most of the region is bituminous, but in the northeastern 
part, near Scranton, Pennsylvania, is a rich anthracite field, an area 
of four hundred and seventy-two square miles, which surpasses in 
mineral wealth any other region of the same size in the world. 

The anthracite coal fields were discovered in 1790 by a hunter whose 
strange stories of stones that burned in his campfire attracted atten- 
tion. Investigation revealed on the Mauch Chunk a hill of excellent 
coal fifty feet high with a surface of forty acres. It was long before 
the people came to understand the use of anthracite, or Discovery of 
"stone coal." Tradition relates that when it was first Anthracite, 
offered for sale in Philadelphia in 181 2 purchasers were unable to 
burn it and drove the seller out of town for a swindler. Another 
story is that an iron manufacturer not long after this tried to use it 
in his furnace. All the forenoon he poked at the fire to make it burn, 
but had no success. Finally he closed the furnace door in disgust 
and went to his dinner. On his return the coal was burning brightly ; 
he had left the drafts open, and the accident is supposed to have 
revealed the secret of the use of anthracite coal. At any rate, this fuel 
has been widely used in America from about 1825. 

Most of the Alleghany coal fields are bituminous. The best por- 
tion of them is around Pittsburg, where there are, also, good deposits 
of iron ore and limestone necessary for iron smelting. Other 
rich portions of the general field are in eastern Ohio, West distribution 
Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, northern Georgia, and Deposits. 
Alabama. Another considerable bituminous coal field is 
the Central. It lies in Indiana, Illinois, and western Kentucky, with 
sporadic deposits in some of the neighboring states. Its total area is 
fifty thousand square miles, and the block coal which it yields is very 
satisfactory for furnaces. In the Rocky Mountains are much lignite 
and some bituminous coal. On the Pacific coast are moderate deposits 
in California, Oregon, and Washington ; and recent investigation has 
shown valuable deposits in Alaska. 

The coal supply of the United States is greater in proportion to the 
national area and more accessible than that of Europe. We have one 


square mile of coal for every ten square miles of surface : Europe has 
one for one hundred and eighty-eight. Besides this, our seams are 
thicker and nearer the surface. In industrial endurance we are, there- 
fore, likely to surpass any other continent, except Asia, where China 
has immense beds. These coal beds bring the Orient into the range of 
world politics, and are apt to bring our own Pacific coast into close 
relations with that part of the world in the future. 

Iron ore was worked in most of the colonies before the revolution. 
At that time furnaces were fired with charcoal, which was plentifully 
obtained from the forests. Most of the enterprises were 
small. There were smelting furnaces, bloomeries for the 
production of wrought iron, and hammers for making bars ; and the 
total output gave the colonists a large part of their iron implements, 
and iron in some forms was sent abroad. 

Roebuck's invention in 1760, by which coal was used in blast fur- 
naces, and the introduction in 1790 of the steam engine to operate the 
blast caused a revolution in iron mining. Charcoal furnaces were dis- 
carded, and the iron industry in the United States was confined to the 
regions which yielded mineral coal. Western Pennsylvania became 
a very important center of the industry, and northern Ohio in the 
Cleveland region, where the rich ores from Lake Superior could meet 
by water transportation the coal from the Alleghany coal region, 
became not only noted for the earlier forms of iron working, but it 
became the home of many factories established to produce the articles 
in which iron is the chief material. The same thing may be said 
of other regions, as West Virginia, eastern Tennessee, and northern 
Alabama. The Alleghany and Central coal fields, and the regions 
contiguous to them, seem, therefore, to be one of the most important 
underlying physical factors of our history, and one which will probably 
gain influence in the future. 

Coal oils are abundant in the upper Ohio valley and are found in 
paying quantities in other regions, as Kansas, Nebraska, and Texas. 
In regions where there has been little geological disturbance 
they accumulate beneath the surface in great lakes. There 
is, also, in the Ohio valley and extending eastward into Virginia, an area 
of oil-bearing shale as large as the states of New York and Pennsyl- 
vania combined. It is one hundred and fifty feet deep and ten per 
cent of it is oil. If satisfactory means can be found to extract this 
product, it will become a vast resource when the oil deposits proper are 

Gold in lodes is found on the Atlantic coast from Newfoundland to 

central Alabama. Before its discovery in California in 1849 it was 

mined profitably in the southern part of this eastern belt, 

but the greater productiveness of the western fields has made 

it nearly unprofitable to work the eastern mines. All the Cordilleran 

region contains gold, and its discovery in California led to great results. 


Very rich mines have been opened in Colorado, Idaho, Montana, 
Utah, and other neighboring states. The last notable gold area dis- 
covered in America is the Klondike fields, opened in 1897. Although 
they are in Canadian territory access to them is through Alaska, and 
the historical results in that territory have been important. In 1859 
two prospectors, Comstock and Jenrode, found a rich silver 
region on Mount Davidson, at what is now Virginia City, 
Nevada. Rapid developments followed, other regions were discov- 
ered, and it was at length seen that in Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, 
New Mexico, Utah, Montana, and Wyoming were vast deposits. 
This development, with the progress of gold mining, gave a strong 
stimulus to the settlement of the mountain region. Railroads were 
built, the Indians were pressed back, states were created, and impor- 
tant industrial and political consequences followed. 

The natural conditions in the United States which most affect 
manufactures are factory power and labor supply. In the earliest 
times the most important form of the former was water- „, 
power. In New England the coastal plain is narrow and power, 
comparatively precipitous. Here water-power is excel- 
lent, and it was utilized long before the revolution. The coming of 
steam power lessened New England's advantage in this respect, but 
did not remove it entirely. As the coal supplies are reduced, water- 
power, whose force is constant, must tend to recover something of its 
former superiority. South of New England the coast plain becomes 
wider and the rivers have less fall. In the Carolinas the plain is so 
level and the evaporation through the long summers so great that 
water-powers are not very important, and only on the largest rivers 
is there a constant supply throughout the year. Generally speaking, 
the region between the Appalachians and the Rockies is level, and good 
water-power is scarce ; but there are exceptions, the most notable 
being Niagara Falls, where there is great possibility for service. That 
part of the Pacific coast which lies between the Coast Range and the 
Sierra Nevada Mountains has good water-power. The Willamette 
near Portland has a fall of forty feet which produces energy equal 
to a million horsepower. 

Early Inhabitants 

The most recent investigations have tended to show that man existed 
in England, Germany, and Java either within or before the glacial 
period, the basis of the contention being the discovery of 
very early skulls. His earliest authentic traces in America ^^^^^ skull, 
do not point to so remote a period. We have, however, 
a disputed claim, which, if conceded, would give the American man a 
very early origin. In 1866 workmen digging a mine-shaft in Calaveras 
county, California, reported the discovery of a human skull in gold- 
bearing gravel of what is generally held to be the pliocene age, although 


some geologists have made it as late as pleistocene. The existence of 
human life at so early a time was so improbable that a dispute at once 
arose as to the genuineness of the discovery, with the result that 
most authorities rejected the claim because the skull was found by 
untrained persons, or concluded that it was either intruded into strata 
artificially or that the strata themselves were irregular. The reported 
discovery in 1913 of a skull in pliocene strata in Sussex county, Eng- 
land, would, however, if confirmed by experts, give some support to 
those who defend the Calaveras skull. 

Another claim is that the presence of man in the glacial period, or 
immediately afterwards, is shown by finding stone implements fash- 
. ioned by man in river drift along the Delaware river and 

in Ohio and Minnesota. This claim is also disputed, the 
supposition being that the implements found were intruded from the 
surface at a much later period. The controversy over this matter 
has been long and warm, but the defenders have found a valuable 
ally in Volk, whose recent investigations have enabled him to say that 
the existence of man on the Delaware in the glacial period cannot be 

A surer basis of reasoning is the skulls found in 1902 at Lansing, 
Kansas, in a silt stratum on the banks of the Missouri. Two opinions 
arose as to their antiquity. One held that they were de- 
ing Skulls, posited in the glacial or post-glacial period and were cov- 
ered by debris which the river brought down from the 
melting glaciers. Others held that they were deposited much later 
and were covered with silt by the shifting currents of the Missouri. 
The second view is more conservative, and has been generally accepted. 
By it the Lansing skulls have been in position not less than one thou- 
sand, and possibly thirty thousand, years. Investigation shows that 
the skulls are those of American Indians. Eliminating .the claims 
not universally received, they seem to be the earliest evidence of man 
in America. 

In various parts of the United States are earth mounds of great 
antiquity. Some are conical, others elongated, others pyramidal, and 
others are irregularly shaped. The first class are usually 
Builders " burial mounds : the uses of the others are not known. Some 
persons have been able to discern in the irregular ones a 
resemblance to certain animals, as the Serpent Mound in Adams 
county, Ohio. They are so far superior in construction to the works 
of the Indians whom the whites found in North America, that it was 
thought that they were made by a distinct race. This conclusion is 
now generally discredited. It is agreed that they are of Indian origin, 
although they probably were created by a superior and now forgotten 
branch of that race. 

Of similar interest are the " Cliflf Dwellers," so called from the nature 
of their dwellings, placed on inaccessible ledges on the steep sides of 


canons in the southwest. They lived chiefly in the Mesa Verde re- 
gion of Colorado, where their houses vary in size from one room to 
more than a hundred. The buildings were evidently made 
in secure places to protect the occupants from the attacks jj ',, „ 
of stronger, though less civilized, enemies who roamed the 
plains. Their walls were of stone, and in the ruins are found evidences 
of a culture more advanced than that of most of the Indians. It was 
formerly assumed that the "Cliff Dwellers" were a distinct race, but 
it is now believed that with the Pueblo Indians, the ancient Mexicans, 
the Mayas of Yucatan, and the early Peruvians, they were only more 
highly cultivated branches of the one original American race which 
survives in the Indians. 

The Indians 

There has been much speculation about the origin of this race, but 
no theory advanced has been free from serious difficulties. The only 
point definitely received is that at one time northeastern 
Asia and northwestern America "formed one culture jn^fans" 
area" ; but it cannot be asserted that the Americans came 
from Asia or that the Asians came from America. Future investi- 
gation may give more satisfactory results, but in a field where so 
much is doubtful we are for the present forced to suspend judgment. 

Although there is unity of general characteristics, there are striking 
variations in the Indians, and it has become the rule to group the tribes 
by these variations, the most notable of which are in cul- 
ture, physical characteristics, and language. Linguistic Classifica- 
differences are most easily observed, and language is taken Indians, 
as the basis of the groups, or families, as they are called. 
But this kind of variation does not always coincide with the others, 
and sometimes we find a small number of Indians remotely settled from 
those to whom by language they seem to be closely related. On this 
basis the United States Bureau of Ethnology divides the Indians 
north of Mexico into fifty-nine families, the most important of which 

I. The Algonquian Family, inhabiting Canada from Hudson's Bay 
southward and extending west as far as British Columbia, and in the 
United States covering all New England, New Jersey, Delaware, east- 
ern Pennsylvania, most of Maryland and Virginia, and practically 
all of the Ohio valley, with the Northwest as far as the upper waters of 
the Mississippi. Among them were the Algonkins proper, Pequots, 
Narragansetts, Mohegans, Powhatans, Pamlicos, Dela wares, Shawnees, 
Miamis, Kickapoos, Illinois, Fox, Cheyennes, and Arapahoes. Here 
one sees the irregularity of the geographical distribution of tribes 
linguistically related. The Algonquian group on the north Atlantic 
coast was divided from the central body by the Iroquoian family, which 
persistently held the country between Lake Erie and the Hudson, and 


far south were the Pamlicos in North Carolina, while much farther 
west, beyond a vast country occupied by a Siouan stock, were the 
Cheyennes and Arapahoes. By what means the sporadic tribes be- 
came isolated from the great mass of the family is not known. 

2. The Iroquoian Family, whose chief group lived in New York and 
western Pennsylvania, on both shores of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, 
and on the St. Lawrence as far as Quebec. There were two southern 
groups, not connected with one another or with the northern group : 
one was the Cherokees in the southern extremity of the Appalachian 
Mountain chain, and the other comprised the Tuscaroras and Notto- 
ways in eastern North Carolina. Of the northern group the tribes 
of greatest historical significance were : the Mohawks, Oneidas, Sene- 
cas, Onondagas, and Cayugas, — generally called "The Five Na- 
tions," — and the Conestogas, Eries, and Wyandots or Hurons. 

3. The Muskhogean Family, who occupied most of Georgia, the up- 
per strip of Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and that part of Tennessee 
lying south and west of the Cumberland. The chief tribes were the 
Creeks, Choctaws, Chickasaws, Seminoles, Alabamas, and Apalachis. 

4. The Siouan Family, the chief group of which lived west of the 
upper Mississippi and throughout most of the Missouri valley. It 
included the Dakotas, Omahas, Winnebagos, Crows, lowas, Mis- 
souris, and the Osage Indians. An eastern group lived in the western 
Carolinas, where their principal tribe was the Catawbas. A small 
sporadic tribe, the Biloxis, lived on the Gulf coast east of the mouth of 
the Pearl river. 

5. The Caddoan Family, whose home on the Gulf west of the mouth 
of the Mississippi extended northward so as to cover most of Louisiana, 
the eastern half of Texas, and the southern parts of Arkansas and 
Indian Territory. The historically important tribes were the Caddos, 
Pawnees, and Wichitas. 

6. The Shoshonean Family, living in western Texas, New Mexico, 
Colorado, northern Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and parts 
of Wyoming and Montana. Its notable tribes were the Shoshones, 
Comanches, Paiutes, and Utes. 

7. The Shahaptian Family, living chiefly in southern Washington. 
Their important tribes were the Nez Perce, Umatillas, and Walla 

8. The Salishan Family, whose home was in northern Washington 
and British Columbia, and whose chief tribe was the Spokanes. 

9. The Athapascan Family, who lived chiefly on the northern Pa- 
cific coast from British Columbia to Alaska, and extended into the 
interior so as to fill up the McKenzie valley. But there was a de- 
tached group in western Oregon, another in California, and still 
another in New Mexico and parts of Arizona and Texas, where lived 
the long remembered Apaches and Navajos. 

10. The Eskimauan Family, living in Arctic regions from Greenland 


and Labrador on the east to the region beyond the Aleutian Islands on 
the west. They are divided by localities into Greenland, Labrador, 
Central, Alaskan, Aleutian, and Asiatic. 

The classification includes, also, a large number of very small fam- 
ilies, more than thirty of which are upon the Pacific slope. It repre- 
sents with reasonable accuracy the distribution of the more important 
historic families at the time they came within the knowledge of Euro- 
peans. The distance at which some detached tribe is located from the 
mass of the family indicates how far the Indians must have wandered, 
searching for good hunting grounds or impelled by struggles with other 
tribes. The dialectic differences between separated portions of the 
same family seem to indicate the lapse of long periods since sep- 

The Indians had little capacity to subdue nature. Hunting and 
fishing were ever the chief means of subsistence of most of the tribes, 
and, except in a few quiet groups of the warm Southwest, 
agriculture was subsidiary to these natural supplies. Where J.^^^'^i!" 
so much depended on outside resources habits varied sification. 
widely with environment. Not only means of support, 
but the character of the houses, and to some extent social and religious 
ideals, were modified by external conditions. Thus it happened that in 
the area occupied by one of the large families there were apt to be wide 
variations of culture, and classification by culture would give different 
groups from the linguistic divisions. It is only through recent inves- 
tigations, largely by the United States Bureau of Ethnology, that 
enough has been learned about the languages of the various tribes to 
make a trustworthy classification on that basis, which is accepted as 
most fundamental. 

Indian Culture 

The Indians lived in tribes, and most tribes were divided into clans. 
The basis of clan unity was kinship, although some members came in 
by adoption. Each clan had a totem, some animal or plant 
to which the members stood in special relation, and by 
whose name it was known, as "Wolf," "Bear," or "Turtle." Some 
believed themselves descended from the totem, others had no such 
idea. Marriage within the clan was strictly forbidden, usually under 
penalty of death. The wife retained membership in her own clan, 
and as her children took her clan, they had no clan-relation with their 
father's clan. This was the only kinship the aborigines knew anything 
about. They did not inherit the father's movable property, but took 
that of the mother. His possessions, if he left any, went to his own 
clan kindred. They could not go to his brothers' children, since they 
would follow the clan of their mothers, but passed to his sisters' chil- 
dren, who alone of his mother's children could be kin to him. If a man 
were killed, his clan held the murderer's clan responsible, either taking 


"blood revenge," or demanding money instead. For one member to 
kill another member of the same clan was exceedingly shocking to the 
Indian's feelings, and they were loath to punish him with death, 
since that involved the shedding of a fellow member's blood. In 
some tribes the difficulty was obviated by first outlawing the mur- 
derer, after which he could be dealt with. The clan was the strongest 
knit of the social units, and its position was fundamental in Indian 
society. It had a kind of sanctity through blood, as is illustrated by 
the fact that some clans had the privilege of furnishing chiefs to the 

The clan had two kinds of leaders, a sachem and a chief. The former 

had civil function in times of peace, being judge and administrator of 

the ancient customs. He was elected by consent of the 

Til A 

Sa hem ^^^^ members and might be deposed by the same authority. 

The office was permanent, and must be filled from the men 
of the clan as soon as there was a vacancy. Adults, men and women, 
had the right to vote for a sachem, and the choice usually fell on a 
brother of the deceased, or the son of a sister, never on a son of the 
former incumbent. The other clans in the tribe must approve of 
the chosen candidate, and he must be inducted into ofiice with ap- 
propriate ceremonies in which the entire nation was represented. 
As head of his clan he sat in the council of the nation. As there was 
one sachem for each clan, and as the clans were long established 
divisions of a tribe, the number of sachems was limited. For 
example, there were eight clans in the Tuscarora tribe of the Iroquoian 
family ; they were called from their totems the " Grey Wolf," " Bear," 
"Great Turtle," "Beaver," "Yellow Wolf," "Snipe," "Eel," and 
"Little Turtle." Each had its sachem, and together they were the 
most distinguished men of the tribe. 

The chiefs were chosen for military purposes, and on account of 
some special quality or work. The office was not necessarily contin- 

uous, and the existence of a vacancy did not demand a new 

election. The number of chiefs varied with the size of the 
clan, in some modern tribes being one for each fifty persons, although 
this proportion is believed too high for ancient society. The chief 
was elected by the clan, which could depose him for unworthy conduct. 
The sachem was the exponent of clan kinship, the chief represented 
individual prowess. In some tribes there was a head chief, one of 
the sachems whose ability pleased the tribe. His functions were con- 
fined to the intervals between the meetings of the tribal council, and 
were not important. 

The clan and the tribe each had a council. Of the former all the 

free adult members of the clan, men and women, were con- 
Council sidered members. It elected and deposed sachems and 

chiefs, decided what should be done to avenge or condone 
the murder of a clan member, adopted new members, and regulated other 


matters pertaining essentially to the group. It was extremely demo- 
cratic, and as the lowest unit of government gave tone to the delibera- 
tions on affairs too large for its jurisdiction. There was also a tribal 
council, composed of all the sachems and chiefs within the tribe. It 
decided upon matters touching the entire tribe, as relations with other 
tribes or with the whites. Any freeman might attend its meetings and 
speak his sentiments there : even the women might be heard through 
an orator whom they chose to speak for them ; but the decision was 
left to the council. The Iroquois, and possibly some other tribes, 
required that a vote of the council be unanimous. 

In some of the large organizations there was a brotherhood, or 
phratry, a third group which was between the clan and the tribe. It 
was composed of clans, usually three or four. Its function „,. „ . 
was social and religious. In the celebrated ball games ^^^^ ™ 
the two sides would represent two brotherhoods. Disputes 
between two clans could be appealed to a council of sachems and chiefs 
from all the clans in the brotherhood. In the funerals of prominent 
men the brotherhood took conspicuous part, but its governmental 
functions were never well developed. 

Naming children was strictly regulated because it bore directly 
on clan organization. Each individual had two names within his 
life, one received at birth, the other at maturity ; that is, at 
sixteen at eighteen years of age. Certain names were persons, 
peculiar to certain clans, and vi^ere not given to children of 
other clans. In some tribes a youth was required to go on the war- 
path and earn his new name by an act of courage or prowess. This 
new name must be approved by the tribal council. An adult might 
change his name if he could get a chief to announce it in council. 
.When a man was elected sachem or chief he took a new name selected 
for him by the council. 

In conferring names, and in many other affairs, the authority of the 
clan or tribe was very great ; but in beginning war much was left to 
the individual. Perhaps it is wrong to speak of the begin- 
ning of war. Strictly speaking, wars between the tribes -^ar.*"^ 
never ended, except those which resulted in alliances. An 
interval of several years might elapse between outbreaks of hostilities, 
but within that time each side considered itself in a state of conflict 
with its enemies. The old men, remembering former trials, might 
prefer peace, but the young men were apt to desire to fight. Under 
such circumstances the latter would form a war party under some 
chieftain of known ability, there would be a war dance, and immedi- 
ately the party would march against the enemy. Each member would 
take a pouch filled with Rockahominy, which was parched corn 
pounded into flour. Between Indian tribes there were usually broad, 
uninhabited zones, and the hostiles might, therefore, be many miles 
away. The Catawbas in upper South Carolina had for hereditary 


enemy the Delawares, in the Delaware valley. The war party, 
painted so their mission might be known, marched through this neutral 
zone supporting themselves on game and fish until they were in the 
enemy's country, where no fires must be made lest the smoke reveal 
the approach of the warriors. Now they relied on the Rockahominy. 
So accustomed were they to fasting that two spoonfuls of it moistened 
with water and swallowed in haste was sufficient for several hours' 
nourishment. If they could surprise the foe, they struck quickly and 
returned with scalps and captives to their home to await some re- 
taliating blow from the injured tribe. While such a war party was out, 
the rest of the tribe might remain at their peaceful occupations. But 
when the war was general and all the fighting men were out, they were 
formed into war bands in the same way, each led by some noted brave 
under whom the warriors desired to serve. 

The most distinguished group of North American Indians was the 
Six Nations of the Iroquoian family, five of whom lived through most 

of our colonial period in western New York, and the other, 
Nations. ^^^ Tuscaroras, in North Carolina. After suffering much 

from their enemies they established early in the fifteenth 
century a well-knit confederacy, with a common council and a strongly 
aggressive policy. They proved themselves the scourge of surrounding 
tribes. Their ancient enemies were the Algonkins of Canada and New 
England. They became friends of the white men in New York, and 
played an important part in the operations against the French of 
Canada, who early incurred their resentment by helping the Algonkins. 
A kindred southern branch, the Cherokees, played an important part 

in the early history of Tennessee and the region south of it. 
Tribes. Further southward were the Creeks and other members of 

the Muskhogean family, very numerous, and for a long 
time they held back whites in the Gulf region. A large number 
of tribes classified as the Siouan family lived in the northern Mississippi 
basin and were represented by some branches on the upper Potomac 
and in the Piedmont region of the East. They were especially de- 
pendent on the buffalo, and followed it westward before the advance of 
the whites. At the middle of the nineteenth century they were in 
the vast Missouri valley, and their representatives, Cheyennes, Arapa- 
hoes, and the Sioux, offered fierce resistance to the whites in the pe- 
riod immediately following the Civil War. 

The white settler's contest with the savage for territory divides it- 
self into well-marked stages. The first colonies, weak and isolated, 

soon came into conflict with some neighboring small tribes 
fndfan Re- ^^° feared the loss of their land. The Pequot war in New 
sistance. England and the Virginia outbreak of 1622 are illustrations. 

The victory of the whites in these earliest struggles gave a 
respite ; but as their settlements extended inland a larger number of 
Indians became alarmed, a stronger combination was formed, and a 


sterner struggle ensued. For example, see King Phillip's war in New 
England, the Tuscarora war in North Carolina, and the Yemassee 
struggle in South Carolina. Another defeat convinced the savages of 
their weakness, and there followed another period of peace until the 
Indians found external allies. On the north it was the French who 
helped them, and several bloody wars were fought before this combina- 
tion was broken. On the south outside aid came from Spain, though 
not openly, and the Indians themselves were numerous enough to be 
formidable. But the whites were now so well planted that the result 
was beyond question. From this time Indian wars were frontier 
struggles, the savages resisting their inevitable fate, sometimes stim- 
ulated to it by the designed oppression of white men and mixed breeds 
who wished an opportunity to seize Indian lands. In this way war 
has run over the land from ocean to ocean, extinguishing some tribes, 
greatly depleting others, and forcibly converting the remainder from 
nomads to agriculturalists. 

In the Indian's character were some of the best and some of the 
worst qualities. In warfare he was stoically indifferent to his own suf- 
fering and also to that of his enemies ; he was true to friends 
and truculent to foes ; he was brave in battle, but he stalked character, 
his enemies as he hunted wild game, and murdered them by 
stealth if he could. When it was necessary he was abstemious, at 
other times he was gluttonous : his virtues and vices were those of the 
savage. His pathetic passage across the page of history has appealed 
to the idealist, but his cruelty and vindictiveness awakened horror 
in most of those who encountered him. 

His intellectual development was slight. The most advanced tribes 
had no system of written language higher than picture writing, which 
reached the stage of symbolism in Algonquian tribes, and 
was rudely hieroglyphical in Mexico and Yucatan. His ^^^^ 
body of tradition, preserved orally, was limited ; and his 
music, chiefly religious, was lacking in harmony, a rhythmic chant with 
complex structure, designed to fire the will rather than please the ear. 
In decorative art he was most successful ; for although he knew nothing 
of higher forms, his designs for ornamental pottery, basketry, and 
weaving had a quiet beauty which appeals to the best modern taste. 
The same quality appears in the simple beauty of many o^his myths. 
His religion was animism, a belief in the existence of numerous 
spirits. He was apt to stress most the importance of the spirit he 
attributed to the thing most influential in his life, as the j^^jj j^^^ 
sun, the rain, or the moon. The tribes of the plains gave 
high place to the spirit of the buffalo. The name manitou, or mystery, 
was used by the Algonquian tribes for spirits, and it has become a 
general term. The early travelers and missionaries spoke of the belief 
in a "Great Spirit," single and invisible, but ethnologists have found 
no evidence that the Indian had such an elevated ideal. He believed, 


however, that man had a soul — some tribes thought he had several 
— and that he Hved after death in a "happy hunting ground." Some 
Indians buried their dead, others cremated them, and others preserved 
them as mummies. A man might make a manitou his friend, and if so 
he became a shaman, or medicine-man. He could now, through the 
aid of his manitou, drive away the evil spirit which was thought to 
inhabit a sick person. He accomplished the work by singing, dancing, 
and physical manipulations. Frequently the patient recovered : if 
he died, it was said that he was possessed by a manitou stronger than 
that of the shaman who treated him. In the more advanced tribes 
of the Southwest there were associations of shamans to preserve the 
secrets of their cult, among which were religious ceremonies. 

Recent comparative studies have thrown much light on Indian 

mythology. It reveals no well-defined idea of creation. Most of the 

stories sa}^ that the earth once differed from its present con- 

y ogy. (^jjJqj^^ ^j^(j j-]^^^ j^gj^ Q^j^^ animals then lived and talked 

together and were the prey of great monsters. There was no daylight 
or fire, and poverty and misery ruled the world. Finally came a 
beneficent person who reformed tribes, taught man to improve his 
habits, and gave him certain inventions. His work of betterment 
done, he departed to come again. The Messianic quality of this per- 
sonage probably suggested the idea that the Indians had a belief in a 
"Great Spirit"; but he was only a culture hero, and not altogether 
an admirable one ; for although he worked for others and had superior 
intelligence he was sometimes a sharp trickster and was frequently 
made ridiculous by his opponents. 

The houses of the Indians were sometimes communal and some- 
times designed for single families. Of the former the best type is 
the long house of the Iroquian tribes. It was made of 
bark and poles, and inner partitions divided it into several 
compartments. A door at each end and openings in the partitions 
gave an open passageway from one end to the other. In each alter- 
nate opening in the partitions was a fire pit with a hole in the roof 
above. One family occupied one compartment, and one fire thus 
served two families. Around the walls of the room were hurdles made 
of small poles, covered with mats and skins. By day they were 
benches and by night beds. Sometimes the houses were large and 
round, with one great fire pit in the center, at which the partitions 
converged, making triangular compartments. 

In a part of our Southwest, Mexico, and Central America the In- 
dians lived in pueblos, the Spanish word for villages. These were 
p great communal houses several stories high, the front wall 

of each story dropping back so as to make a terrace. In 
the modern pueblos doors are made in the walls, but formerly the 
interior was reached through holes in the flat roofs, or floors, of the 
terraces by means of ladders which were taken up at night or when 


there was danger of intruders. The building material was either 
adobe or rough stones laid in clay mortar. When the whites entered 
the Southwest there were about sixty-five of these houses there. They 
were the usual type of Mexican dwelling, and the imaginative Spaniards 
who first saw them described them as palaces. In Yucatan they 
achieved a degree of massiveness and ornamentation which indicates, 
perhaps, the highest point of development in Indian architecture. 
Tribes of different linguistic stock adopted this kind of house, and the 
term Pueblo Indians has been used for all of them. It ought to be re- 
membered that it has no family significance. 

Contact with the white man made it necessary for the Indian to 
adopt civilized habits or perish. In ordinary social evolution this 
change would have required many centuries. Stimulated 
by the liberal government of the United States the more '^^^ Indians 
advanced tribes have made progress, the less advanced whites, 
have caused disappointment to their well wishers. The 
Cherokee and Muskhogean tribes have shown greatest power of 
assimilation, both in their eastern homes and in the now obliterated 
Indian Territory, where they resided for seventy-five years. They 
show, also, a slight gain in population, which cannot be said of most of 
the Indians who formerly lived on the western plains and who have 
been gathered into reservations under government supervision. In 
contact with civilization the Indian is abnormally susceptible to dis- 
eases, particularly smallpox, measles, and tuberculosis. The use of 
spirituous liquors is also especially harmful. The males generally 
are averse to manual labor, and agricultural progress has often meant 
more idleness for the men and more work for the women. Idleness 
breeds bad habits, which retard racial progress. 

In 1500 there were about half a million Indians in North America, 
the great majority being in what is now the United States, where, by 
the best estimates, there are now, iQii, only 322,715. In 
the latter number are included 101,287 in the five civilized conditions. 
tribes, including freedmen and intermarried whites. Dur- 
ing the last half century the Indian population seems to have been 
about stationary. The Cherokees, Creeks, Choctaws, Chickasaws, 
and Seminoles now included in Oklahoma are the five civilized 
tribes. They are self-supporting and prosperous. In 191 1 the total 
federal appropriation for Indians was $10,452,911. In this year 
$9,381,232 was spent on Indian education. 


For physical features see : Farrand, Basis of American History (1904) ; Whitney, 
The United States (1889); Shaler, Physiography of North America (in Winsor, 
Narrative and Critical History, 1884); and Ibid., The United States of America, 
2 vols. (1897). See also the articles on "North America" and "United States 
in Mill, International Geography (1900). 


On means of communication see: Brigham, Geographic Influences in American 
Hisiorv (1903), more geographical than historical; Semple, American History 
and it's Geographic Conditions (1903), many facts poorly arranged; Russell, Rivers 
of North America (1898) ; Willis, The Northern Appalachians (1895) ; and Hayes, 
The Southern Appalachians (1895). Besides Shaler, The United States of America, 
and Farrand, Basis of American History, just mentioned, a good treatment of 
natural resources is Patton, Natural Resources of the United States (1899). 

On American archaeology see Thomas, Introduction to the Study of North American 
Archaeology (1898) ; and Moorehead, Prehistoric Implements (1900). On the same 
subject also consult Farrand, Basis of American History, mentioned above. 

On the Indians, valuable works are : Brinton, The American Race (1891) ; Dellen- 
baugh, North Americans of Yesterday (1901) ; Powell, Indian Linguistic Families 
(U. S. Bureau of Ethnology, Seventh Annual Report, 1891) ; Farrand, Basis of 
American History (1904); and Thomas, hidians of North America (Vol. II of 
History of North America, Lee, Ed., 1903). 

For Independent Reading 

Dellenbaugh, North Americans of Yesterday (1901) ; Parkman, The Oregon Trail 
(1849) ; Matthews, Navaho Legends (1897) ; Brinton, American Hero Myths (1882) ; 
Grinnell, Pawnee Hero Stories (1889) ; and Lewis and Clark, Journals (in several 


Events and Ideas Leading to the Discovery 

The first recorded contact of Europe and America was by way of the 
north. In 874 a Norse colony settled in Iceland and made it a center 
of culture and prosperity. Two years later a ship blown 
out of her way returned to Iceland with the story of a great j^^^ ^ 
body of land to the westward. For a hundred years no 
efforts seem to have been made to investigate the report, but in 9S3 
Eric the Red, exiled from the island for manslaughter, solved the 
mystery, and named the newly discovered country Greenland, be- 
cause he thought a good name would attract settlers. A colony was 
planted, the remains of which are still visible, and in the year 1000 
his son, Leif Ericsson, arrived from Norway with missionaries to con- 
vert the country to Christianity. Vague reports were in circulation 
of a great land to the west, and he set out to explore it, coming after 
a time to a slaty shore, which he skirted southward for days, until he 
came at last to a pleasant place where a river ran out of a lake into 
the sea. He brought his ship into the haven and explored the country. 
It abounded in timber and "wild wheat," probably oats; and one of 
the crew, who came from the vine-growing portion of Europe, dis- 
covered grapes still hanging in the autumn sunlight. Leif, thinking, 
no doubt, that a good name would benefit this land as much 
as that of his father, called the place Vinland. An attempt 
to colonize Vinland now followed, and several voyages were made 
thither within the next twelve years. All ended disastrously. The 
place was too remote for successful exploitation, and the deeds of the 
adventurers survived only in the sagas, a part of the heroic achieve- 
ment of the Norse past. To the people of the time and to those who 
succeeded them the newly discovered land was not part of a great 
continent, but only an indefinite No Man's Land beyond the myste- 
rious seas. It was probably what we now know as the shores of Nova 
Scotia, although some students identify it with the New England 
coast and point out Martha's Vineyard as the particular spot. 

About 1390 two Venetian brothers named Zeno were 
employed by the Earl of the Orkneys and Caithness in di- gf^he^rT 
recting his navy. They were skillful sailors, helping to con- 
quer the Shetland Islands, and about 1394 they made a voyage to 



Greenland. Stories of a great land to the west were brought in by fish- 
ermen, and a few years later the younger brother, with the earl himself, 
sailed to discover it. The story goes that they found land some days' 
sail beyond Ireland, and that the earl remained to explore it. Zeno 
wrote an account of his adventures, which, with some letters and a 
map, were preserved in the family palace in Venice. In 1558 all that re- 
mained of them was published by a descendant, the map confessedly 
improved by the editor. The text, much of which is lost through 
neglect, was probably altered to suit the then recently acquired 
knowledge of the New World. It is impossible to say what Zeno 
discovered, but he may well have fallen upon some part of the North 
Atlantic coast, to encounter which was easy if one only sailed long 
enough west of Ireland. 

Neither of these explorations served to bring the American continent 
within the knowledge of Europe, because (i) the lands discovered 
were not believed to be parts of a vast mainland, (2) the discoverers 
were not strong enough economically to develop the new lands, and 
(3) it was, after all, not a new continent that the Old World was look- 
ing for, but a new way to an old one. The voyage of Columbus really 
discovered America, but before it was made several things prepared 
the way. 

The most important was the disaster which overtook the trade 
between Europe and the East in the second half of the fifteen century. 

Spices, silk, perfumes, dyes, precious stones, and other 
^f *o""''t'T oriental goods were brought west by three principal routes. 
Trade. ^'^^ ^^^ ^Y water along the southern shore of Asia to the 

Red Sea, thence by caravan to the Nile, and finally to 
Alexandria. Another was a middle journey by caravan and rivers 
through Persia and Syria to Acre, Antioch, and other Syrian ports. 
A third was by river, caravan, and interior seas to the Euxine, where 
Constantinople was the chief terminus of the trade. To these cities 
came merchants from Italy, France, and Spain, purchasing the eastern 
goods and passing them on to the interior and northern towns of 
Europe. Most aggressive were the traders from Venice and Genoa. 
From each eastern town they secured privileges of trade with perma- 
nent quarters in which they were ruled by their own laws and protected 
by their own home governments. These quarters, with their in- 
habitants, became the outposts of a valuable industrial life. Both 
towns also owned many colonies on the ^Egean Islands. In 1453 the 
Turks seized Constantinople and began to take all the ports of the 
East, until in 15 17 Cairo was taken and Egypt became a Turkish prov- 
ince. Each step in the conquest was followed by trade restrictions. 
High tariffs were levied, privileges were curtailed, and the island pos- 
sessions of Venice and Genoa were seized by the conquerors. These 
disasters were felt by all the Mediterranean merchants, and stimulated 
a general desire for another way to the East. 


Such a route, if discovered, must be by sea, and it must begin at the 
Straits of Gibraltar. For centuries the ocean beyond this point was a 
sea of terror on which sailors dreaded to venture. North 
of the straits the coast was known as far as Scotland and Effects of 
Scandinavia : south of it men sailed as far as Cape Non, of^^now?- 
about seven hundred miles. The compass and the astrolabe edge, 
slowly came into use on the Mediterranean during the 
fifteenth century and enabled the mariner to sail confidently when 
either land or stars were not in sight. The renaissance of science by 
the middle of the fifteenth century dominated the minds of learned 
men and was beginning to reach the more independent spirits in navi- 
gation and other practical arts. Before such a process the sea of terror 
became merely a part of the unknown, and as such invited discovery. 

The first attempts to penetrate its mysteries were made by Por- 
tuguese. On the east coast of Africa, south of Egypt, tradition then 
located the native Christian kingdom of "Prester John," ,. 
whose power and wealth were much exaggerated in the jojjn- 
popular imagination. African traders in Morocco told 
about interior towns from which roads ran southward to a southern 
sea into which flowed a river great enough to be compared to the Nile. 
To pass from Cape Non to the region of Abyssinia seemed possible, 
and, since it would open a water communication to India, it would 
be profitable. It was Portugal's fortune to have the man who 
could lead in this work. 

Prince Henry the Navigator was a younger son of John I. Without 
family responsibilities or hope of the crown he could follow the prompt- 
ings of a scientific and adventurous disposition. In 14 19 
at Sagres, on Cape St. Vincent, he established a home and ^^^y^ 
drew around him a group of intelligent mariners, geog- 
raphers, and map makers. His father, brother, nephew, and great- 
nephew, four generations of kings, supported his work and carried it 
on after his death in 1460. The first results were unimportant. The 
Madeiras and Azores were rediscovered, explored, and colonized, but 
the timid captains were afraid to get far away from the shore, and 
Cape Boyador, under the Tropic of Cancer, was so dangerous that for 
a long time none dared pass it. But in 1434 Gil Eannes, bolder 
than his colleagues, sailed far out to sea, doubled the perilous point, 
and proved that the "Sea of Darkness" was safe. 

Progress was now more rapid. Year after year an additional por- 
tion of the desert coast was observed, until finally, in 1445, Dinis Fer- 
andez passing at last the glinting sands, came to a green 
point which he called Cape Verd. A fertile country now Explored, 
appeared, peopled by "Moors," or negroes, some of whom 
were taken to Portugal, where slaves were in demand. It was the 
beginning of a trade which threatened for a time to defeat the further 
exploration of the coast. One expedition after another sent to make 


discoveries came back with nothing but slaves. In 1455 Cadamosto, 
passing the Cape Verd Islands, sailed so far into the Gulf of Guinea 
that it was believed the southern extremity of Africa was turned. His 
mistake was soon known, and the explorations were pushed on, more 
slowly after the death of Prince Henry, 1460, until at last in 1487 
Bartholomew Diaz sailed past the Cape of Good Hope. The mutiny 
of his crew forced him to return to Portugal, but the world now knew 
that Africa could be circumnavigated. The Portuguese discoveries 
were important because they made explorations popular, created a 
school of bold navigators willing to attempt any seas, and at last 
brought men to the fabled East, tales of whose wealth up to that time 
fascinated the European imagination like a fairy dream. They en- 
larged the world's knowledge of geography, but threw little light upon 
the question of the earth's shape. 

The theory of the sphericity of the earth was held by Aristotle, who 
died in 322 B.C. He drew his conclusion from the circular shadow of 

the earth on the moon in eclipse and from the varying al- 
Revived Be- titude of stars, and he announced that one common ocean 
S^heridt probably united Spain and India. A century later Eratos- 
of the Earth, thenes in Alexandria applied mathematics to this idea and 

calculated the circumference of the earth, making it four- 
teen per cent, too large. Other Greeks, probably very many, accepted 
sphericity, but it was rejected by the early Christian church, which 
had its own idea of the cosmos. Arabian scientists kept the spark of 
knowledge alive through many centuries, and Roger Bacon in the 
thirteenth century incorporated it in his Opus Majus, whence it was 
abstracted by Pierre d'Ailly for his Imago Mundi (1410). The last 
was a widely read work in the day when explorations and all kinds of 
new knowledge were exceedingly popular. Astronomers and many 
others at the end of the fifteenth century were ready to accept the 
theory independently of the voyage of Columbus. Martin Behaim, 
a German geographer, in the very year Columbus made his memorable 
voyage, and without the discoverer's knowledge, made a copper globe 
with the known lands described on it. In calculating the circumfer- 
ence of the earth the astronomers made a mistake, estimating it at 
three fourths of its real magnitude. The result was to make China 
seem six thousand miles nearer Europe than it really is, a fortunate 

A better knowledge of the East also helped to prepare the way for 
the discoveries of Columbus. In the later thirteenth century three 

Venetian merchants named Polo went to Cathay, or China, 
Tiie Story of f^j. ^-j-g^^jg^ Qne of them, Marco Polo, became a favorite of 
Polo. the ruler, or Grand Khan, and remained many years at the 

court, where he had opportunity to learn about the extent, 
geography, and wealth of the country. In 1295 the three returned 
to Venice with great quantities of gems. In 1298 Marco wrote an 


account of his adventures, calling it The Book of Ser Marco Polo. 
Before this time China was believed to be bordered by immense 
marshes, but he declared that it was washed by a vast ocean and that 
within this ocean lay Cipango, or Japan, a great island rich in gold 
and cities. The book fired the imagination of Europe, heightened 
the charm of the East, and stimulated the hope of reaching the East 
by sea. If the earth were a globe, why might not the ocean west of 
the Straits of Gibraltar be the same as that east of Cipango ? 

Thus through the merchants' desire for a western way to the East, 
through improvements in navigation, through the slowly evolved 
conviction that the world was round, and through the better acquaint- 
ance with the geography of China, the time was come when some 
adventurous man would compass the unknown by making a path from 
the Straits of Gibraltar to fabled Cipango. The scholars believed 
this possible but had not the courage to attempt it. Navigators had 
courage to accomplish it but had not the mind to believe in it. Chris- 
topher Columbus had the requisite skill and faith. He had also the 
persistence and endurance necessary to carry him successfully through 
the initial stages of an enterprise which the world could not understand. 

The Achievement of Columbus 

Columbus's father was a wool- worker, but the boy early became a 
navigator. An age which knows as ours how poor boys of mind 
become prominent will understand how he turned to the 
most progressive vocation then open to .him. He learned ^ Educa- 
Latin and read diligently the geographical books of the coiumbus. 
day. He was attracted to Portugal, where he married 
into the family of a prominent navigator. He sailed as far north as 
England, possibly to Iceland ; and he lived for a time on the island 
of Porto Santo, north of Madeira. We do not know how he came to 
believe he could reach China by the west, but we know he mastered 
all available knowledge on the subject. When he read in a book that 
the frigid and torrid zones were uninhabitable, he confuted it in the 
margin on the ground that the Portuguese sailed through the torrid 
zone and found it inhabited, while the English and the Norse visited 
the frigid zone. It was sound reasoning to set observation against 
tradition. But when tradition favored him he accepted it. He saw 
in the apocryphal book of Esdras that only one seventh of the surface 
of the earth was water : had he been an equally sound reasoner he would 
have withheld judgment until some one observed the quantity of earth 
and water. But Esdras suited his theory, and he accepted the state- 
ment without question. The error tended to make him^ think it was 
but a short distance from Europe to his goal. 

While in Portugal, about ten years before his famous voyage, Co- 
lumbus learned that Toscanelli, a noted Florentine astronomer, had 


announced the possibility of sailing from the west to the east. He 
wrote to the Italian, asking for instructions, and received in reply a 

copy of a former letter by the astronomer in which the possi- 
Columbus bility of the fact in question was asserted, but no directions 
caneiii! ' ^^^ making the journey were given. In fact, they could not 

have been given in the existing state of information about 
the western seas, for these seas were not explored. Toscanelli perhaps 
gave Columbus confidence in his ideas, but all the information in his 
letter was to be found elsewhere. 

Whatever the source, Columbus, when in Portugal, had the convic- 
tion that his project was feasible. He talked so much about it that 

he got the reputation of a boaster, and when he applied to 
Efforts to King John II for a ship to test his idea, he was turned aside 
ance ^^'^ ' ^^ ^ dreamer. It was then 1484, and he betook himself to 

Spain, where for seven years he urged his plans with little 
prospect of success. In the interval he sent his brother, Bartholomew, 
to London to see if help could be secured there. It has been said that 
Bartholomew gained a promise from Henry VII, but it was given after 
the king and queen of Spain relented. It was really the queen who 
gave the assistance. She was induced to do so by her former confes- 
sor, Juan Perez, and by the treasurer of Aragon, Luis de Santangel. 

To make his voyage, Columbus had three ships fully manned. The 
expense was assumed by Isabella, who in her own right was sovereign 

of Castile. The money, 1,000,000 maravedis, $59,000, 
Columbus s gggj^g ^Q have been borrowed on the queen's security. The 

old story that she pledged her jewels is now generally dis- 
credited. Columbus was made an hereditary grandee and admiral of 
Castile, with the right to govern the new lands he should discover. 
He and his heirs were to have one tenth of all the gold and silver he 
should find, and they might pay one eighth of the expenses of fitting 
out any expedition and take a similar portion of the profits thus se- 
cured. Letters of introduction to the rulers of the East were also fur- 
nished, and with these in his pocket the stern discoverer, raised from 
the rank of adventurer to that of great lord and friend of sovereign 
princes, embarked his unwilling crew of less than one hundred men. 
August 3, 1492, in the early morning, the three ships, the Santa Maria, 

Pinta, and the Nina, stood out to sea from the port of 
parture ' Palos, sailing first to the Canaries. The first was the largest, 

and alone, of the three, had a deck. Her tonnage is esti- 
mated at one hundred to two hundred and eighty, and that of her 
companions at one hundred and forty and one hundred respectively. 
A great event never depended on frailer agencies. 

Stopping at the Canaries to refit, the fleet sailed again on September 

6. Fear seized the hearts of the crew as they saw the land 

disappear on the eastern horizon. They were steering 
into seas hitherto unexplored, under the orders of a visionary, and 


were full of dismay. Columbus kept a diary of all that happened, re- 
porting it to the queen ; but for the sailors he kept another log in 
which he shortened the distance sailed. No storms were encountered, 
and the trade winds blew him steadily westward. Scowling at first, 
the crew at length became sullen, and finally, October 10, threatened 
to throw the admiral overboard. To none of these difficulties would 
he yield : "He had come to go to the Indies," he said, "and he would 
keep on till he had found them with the aid of our Lord." It is well 
to remember that Columbus's greatness consisted, not so much in his 
original idea, as in the determined spirit in which he risked his life to 
execute it. 

On the evening of October 11 lights were seen in the darkness and 
soon the roar of the surf was heard. At dawn a low green shore was 
before them, an island which the natives called Guanahani, 
and which the pious Columbus renamed San Salvador, f-oveiv^' 
Its identity is lost, but the best guess is that it was Watling's 
Island, one of the Bahamas. It was inhabited by naked savages with 
whom the admiral conversed by signs. They reported a great king- 
dom to the south, and he turned in that direction, discovering Cuba, 
which he thought the mainland of India. The natives he called 
Indians, and the term has persisted to this day. He was impressed by 
seeing them drawing smoke through tubes made from the leaves of a 
certain plant, and noted that the natives called these tubes tobaccos. 
Sailing along the eastern half of the north coast of Cuba he came at 
length to Hayti, which he called La Isla Espanola, whence Hispaniola. 
It proved an ill-fated country, for on its shores he lost his best ship, 
the Santa Maria. 

Columbus's thoughts now turned to Spain, and leaving forty-four men 
to establish a Spanish post, learn the language of the natives, and 
plant food crops, he departed early in 1493. Storms har- 
rassed his return, but March 15 he cast anchor at Palos. spa^ ° 
All Spain echoed with his praise, and news of the discovery 
quickly ran throughout Europe. Many people doubted if the new 
lands were really India — among them the king of Portugal, who said 
plainly they were only a part of Guinea, discovered by the Portuguese 
and confirmed to his crown by papal bulls and by a treaty with Spain 
in 1480. A serious quarrel might have followed, but Spain appealed 
to the Pope, Alexander VI, a Spaniard, and May 3 and 4 he issued 
two bulls dividing the new lands between the two countries. An 
imaginary line was authorized one hundred leagues west of the Azores 
and Cape Verde Islands, all the lands discovered east of it being given 
to Portugal and all west and south of it going to Spain. 
The arrangement was not satisfactory, and it was modified I ^ Papal 
by another bull, September, 1493, and by a treaty between 
Spain and Portugal, 1494, by which the line of demarcation was fixed 
at three hundred and seventy leagues west of Cape Verde Islands. 


Columbus's reports occasioned great enthusiasm in Spain, and 
many expeditions were planned. Most of them ended in disappoint- 
ment, but the work of exploration was forwarded. The 

t^*^° J-*- kins and queen were delighted with their admiral and sent 

Expedition. ,.'^.,^.^ ,» ., ,. , 

him forth m September, 1493, with seventeen ships and 

thirteen hundred persons, gentlemen adventurers, laborers, soldiers, 
and missionaries, to plant a Spanish colony. The settlement was to 
be under the admiral's absolute authority. A town was laid out in 
Hayti and called Isabella. Gold mines were found in the interior, and 
the neighboring natives, always submissive, were ordered to work them 
and bring in a certain amount of gold each month. A native chieftain, 
despairing of complying with the order, offered instead to cultivate 
a large tract of land for the benefit of the whites ; but Columbus re- 
jected the plan because he knew that gold alone would be valued in 
Treatment Spain. He saw that if he could not satisfy this desire 
of the he would have no support at home. The harsh meas- 

Natives. ^j-gg jjg ^qqI^ with the Indians reduced the native popula- 
tion of the island by two-thirds in three years. When he went to 
Spain in 1496 many of his returned companions declared that there 
was no gold in Columbus's Indies ; but the admiral managed to pro- 
duce enough of the precious stufT to satisfy the sovereigns that ex- 
plorations should continue. A portion of the natives were cannibals, 
and Columbus suggested that permission be granted to take these 
to Spain for slaves. He probably hoped by this means to support 
the explorations, as the negroes from Guinea supported the Por- 
tuguese enterprise ; but Ferdinand the Catholic was not willing to 
authorize the enslavement of the natives. Nevertheless Columbus 
and others sent Indian slaves to Spain, where they were generally 
liberated. Spite of the efforts of the government, enslavement was 
practiced in the colonies, until most of the natives of the West Indies 

After 1496 Columbus made two voyages, one in 1498 and another in 
1502. On the former he steered far southward, hoping to pass all 

obstructions, reach the Indian ocean, and circumnavigate 
F^'^tiT^^ the globe. To his surprise he encountered a great body of 
Voyages. land, about which Marco Polo said nothing, sailing past it 

for days in a westward direction. A sailor let down a bucket 
at one point and found the water fresh. It was from the mouths of 
the Orinoco river, and Columbus rightly concluded that so great a river 
must flow out of a vast continent. He spoke of it as another world, 
never doubting, however, that the land discovered to the northward 
was part of India. His fourth voyage was made to find a passage 
between this new continent and the old. The journey was delayed 
by great storms, but steering a more northerly course, he came at 
length to the coast of Honduras. He sailed south about twelve 
hundred miles past the Isthmus of Panama, whose narrowness he did 

^^^^rait uf Magellan 
"^^'Caiu- florn 



WilU.m^Engra.ingOo.. N. T. 

90^ LoDgitude tJO^ West from 3Q^ Greenwich 0° 


not suspect, and returned to Spain in 1504 after many hardships. He 
died two years later, May 20, 1506. 

Columbus was most successful as an explorer. Here one needed 
courage, persistence, intelligence, and faith in a mission ; and he had 
them all. As an administrator he was not successful. He 
was sensitive, arbitrary, unyielding, and severe. Low-born ^i^^ppi- 
and a foreigner, he could not govern Spanish noblemen columbus. 
without friction. His appointment to command colonies 
was unwise and brought him much sorrow. Numerous bitter enemies 
sprang up among those whom he tried to rule, and their denunciations 
cut his sensitive spirit deeply. The greatest indignity he suffered was 
when in 1500 he was sent back to Spain in irons, charged with mal- 
feasance. The spectacle aroused the sympathy of Spain, and the 
king and queen ordered his release. But his political authority in the 
New World was annulled, and his monopoly in discovery was limited. 

Exploring the Coasts of the New World 

Spain, Portugal, France, and England shared the labor of exploring 
the world Columbus discovered. Stopped by its position across the 
pathway to India, their mariners turned northward and 
southward in search of a way to the Orient. Thus every T^o Phases 
gulf and bay of importance was explored until at last Cape °ion.'^^ °'^^' 
Horn was passed and the spice islands reached across the 
vast Pacific. Then they took up the task of exploring the interior, 
led on by a consuming hunger for precious metal. The rest of this 
chapter deals with explorations by sea and land. 

In this work Spain took the lead. Hayti, colonized by Columbus, 
furnished a base for expeditions to the shores of the Gulf of Mexico 
and the Caribbean Sea. Cuba, first circumnavigated in 
1508, was immediately thereafter conquered and colonized j'^j"!^^"^' 
by Velasquez, and furnished a new and more westerly base. Lookout. ^^^ 
Columbus's third voyage, 1498, developed the coast line 
for nearly three hundred miles west of Trinidad, and his fourth, 1502, 
revealed the shore from near the Cape of Honduras past the isthmus 
to the Gulf of Uraba. In 1499 Hojeda, accompanied by Amerigo 
Vespucci, sailed for America on an important voyage. He reached 
the coast near Paramaribo, in Surinam, and sailed west to a point near 
the terminus of the third voyage of Columbus. North of Honduras, 
around to the south of Florida, explorations were made by various 
persons from 1508 to 1522, and during the same period other Spaniards 
explored the Atlantic coast as far north as Cape Lookout, in North 
Carolina. This hollow coast line from Trinidad northward to North 
Carolina, with the islands between, was looked upon by Spain as hers 
by right of discovery, and the claim was generally allowed. 


To her also belongs the honor of discovering Brazil and the region 
south of it. In 1499 Vicente Yaiiez Pinzon sailed for America. 
. Driven out of his course by a great storm he crossed the 

equator and made land some distance south of it. Then 
turning north he followed the coast for two thousand miles, past the 
mouth of the Amazon, until he set out for home with the wonderful 
news of a vast continent not hitherto mentioned in any then known 
account of the East. Before he could reach Spain another adventurer, 
Diego de Lepe, setting out later than Pinzon and returning earlier, 
reported a similar discovery in the same region. He reached a point 
as far south as Cape St. Augustine, in Brazil. Amerigo Vespucci 
is believed to have accompanied de Lepe. Spain had no advantage 
from these two important voyages ; for Brazil was east of the famous 
papal dividing line. 

The appearance of Vespucci in this narrative is interesting because 
his name was given to the New World. This came, as we shall see, 
„ . from a piece of fraud committed, not to get the honor of 

V6SDUCC1> • - 7 o 

naming the continent, but to create the impression that he 
first discovered it. He was born in Florence, became a man of busi- 
ness, and in 1492 went to Seville as an agent for the commercial house 
of the Medici. He became connected with the navigators, whose ships 
he fitted out, and finally decided to accompany them on some of their 
voyages. He made four journeys across the ocean, but was the leader 
of none of them. His fame rests on his faculty of writing and on his 
willingness to exaggerate his importance in the affairs he describes. 
He later wrote two letters, in one of which he described his first voyage 
and in the other all of the four. These letters were widely published 
and created the impression that the writer deserved to have South 
America bear his given name. 

Vespucci says that he made the first voyage in 1497, that he sailed 
along the northern coast of South America, and by mentioning no 
other person as commander of the expedition he gives the 
liabilitT^' impression that the leadership was his. After much in- 
vestigation and reasonable deduction it is generally con- 
ceded that he antedated the expedition by two years in order to place 
it before that of Columbus in 1498, that he really made it in 1499 in 
company with Hojeda, who was sole commander, and that his de- 
scriptions of the places discovered are almost exactly those of this later 
voyage. His second journey was made in 1500. Again he omits the 
name of the commander but says that he himself commanded one of 
the ships. The latter statement is doubted because it is not sup- 
ported by the fairly complete naval records of the time. His third 
and fourth voyages are not important, being made to places admittedly 
already discovered. 

Vespucci's letter describing his third voyage was published in Latin 
in 1503 with the title Mundus Novus. It is the first published Latin 


account of the new continent south of what was still supposed to be 
India. Columbus's letter describing his discovery of 1497 was not 
published in Latin until 150S, whereas Vespucci's sec- 
ond letter, in which all his alleged discoveries were des- .. Amerka!" 
cribed, was published in Latin in 1507. The story of the 
Florentine, therefore, first pubHshed in the language of learned men, 
alleged to belong to the year n;497, and told in an attractive style, 
created the false impression that he and not Columbus discovered 
the great unknown mainland, and in his honor the name "America," 
from the Latin form of his Christian name, was given to that region — 
but not at first to the region north of the Isthmus of Panama.^ The 
order of development is something like this : first we have "America" 
south of the isthmus and "India" north of it ; next, "America" south 
of the isthmus and "North America" north of it finally; "South 
America" in the south and "North America" in the north. The first 
person to use the name "America" — although others earlier used 
" Mundus Novus " for South America — was Martin „, ,^ 
Waldseemiiller, a professor of geography at St. Die, who ^luiier. 
in a book of his own published Columbus's second letter in 
1507. Thoroughly under the influence of Vespucci's narrative he 
described this newly discovered land and added, since " Americus dis- 
covered it, it maybe called Amerige; in other words, the land of Amer- 
icus, or America." He said further that he preferred the form "Amer- 
ica," since both Europe and Asia were named for women. A map 
which accompanied his book used the name, which was soon in gen- 
eral popular use in most of Europe outside of Spain, where the term 
"Indies" was used long after its absurdity was recognized. Wald- 
seemiiller later changed his mind about the name, and in a map which 
he made in 15 13 substituted the term "Terra Incognita" ; but it was 
too late to overtake the error of 1507. 

But one more discovery was now needed to make the New World 
stand in clear relief before the eye of the old — and that was made by 
Magellan in 1 5 19-15 2 2. Although a Portuguese, he sailed 
under Spanish authority with five ships manned by un- Djscoveryf 
willing and mutinous crews. He spent the first winter on 
the eastern shore of South America, forty-nine degrees south, where 
the climate was like that of Newfoundland. Here he put down a 
mutiny by his individual courage, and in the spring resumed his jour- 
ney. October 21, in the Antarctic spring, he entered the straits which 
now bear his name — a channel from two to five miles wide and three 
hundred and twenty-five miles long. Its last half passes between 
high rocky banks with impressive mountains on each side. The little 
fleet passed through fearsomely, not knowing what mysterious terror 
the next league ahead might present. At length the cliffs receded and 

1 The arguments in this connection are admirably given in Bourne, Spain in America, 
ch. vii. 



the straits opened to a broad ocean which Magellan called "Mare 
Pacificum." He struck out boldly to the northwest, and after much 
suffering came at last to the rich islands of the East. He was killed 
in battle with the natives in the island of Matau, one of the Philip- 
pines. A single ship survived the perils of the sea and reached Spain, 
having proved the truth of Columbus's dream. 

Next to Spain, Portugal took prominent part in American explora- 
tions. Her West African voyages throughout the fifteenth century 
Portuguese gave her a prestige which the immense activity of Spain at 
Explorations, the close of the century threatened to discredit. Spurred 
Vasco da by this thought she sent out Vasco da Gama in 1497. He 
Gama. went first to the Cape Verde Islands, then striking into the 

great South Atlantic, sailed without signs of land till he came to thirty 
degrees south latitude, when he turned to the southeast, and after a long 
time reached the coast at a point one hundred miles north of Cape of 
Good Hope. His course represented two sides of a triangle, to cover which 
he took ninety-three days, out of sight of land ; whereas Columbus 
on his first voyage took only thirty-five days from the Canaries to 
Guanahani. Passing then around the cape, which had been unvisited 
since Bartholomew Diaz was blown past it in 1487, he sailed on to 
India, where, indeed, the lands of spices and gems lay before him. 
His return to Lisbon brought the glow of old-time pride to the hearts 
of his compatriots. It shows in a letter the king sent to Ferdinand and 
Isabella, announcing that a Portuguese captain had reached the real 
India where there were real pepper and real rubies. 

In 1 500 another Portuguese navigator sailed into the unknown seas, 
going as boldly into the north as da Gama went into the south. This 

was Caspar Corte-Real, who sailed many days and found 
Reals ^"^ ^' "^ IsiT^d which was very cool and with great woods," but 

not otherwise described. In 1 501 , with three ships he sailed 
for the same coasts. One of the vessels was lost with the com- 
mander aboard, but the others returned with fifty captive Eski- 
mos. Surviving stories and contemporary maps show that he 
visited Labrador and explored Newfoundland. In 1502 his brother, 
Miguel Corte-Real, went out to find the lost Caspar and was 
himself cast away. A year later the king sent out an expedition to 
find the two brothers, but it was futile. These northern explorations 
are only geographically important : Portugal founded no territorial 
claims on them. 

More important were her attempts on the Brazilian coast. In 
1500, a few months before Caspar Corte-Real sailed, one of her cap- 
_ . J tains, Cabral, with thirteen ships dropped down to the Cape 

Verde Islands, and, like da Gama, stood thence out into the 
ocean. But he turned farther west, where the ocean is narrowest, and 
reached land in eighteen degrees south latitude and took possession in 
the name of Portugal. He sent one ship to report his discovery and 


with the others sought to pass beyond this land to India. Storms im- 
peded his progress and he was forced to turn back- 
While Spain and Portugal explored and acquired portions of the 
New World, England, through no inclination of her own rulers, ex- 
plored and secured title to the portion she was later to r h E 
colonize. John Cabot, born in Genoa, but a naturalized piorations. 
citizen of Venice, after unsuccessful attempts in Spain and jq^^ cabot. 
Portugal, came to England, where the king, Henry VII, in 
1496 gave him such lands as he might discover beyond the sea to hold the 
same in the English name. In a ship no larger than Columbus's Nina, 
with a crew of eighteen, he sailed in May, 1497, '^'^^1 four hundred leagues 
west of Ireland come to land, probably Newfoundland. He skirted 
the coast southward for three hundred leagues and returned to Eng- 
land, where the thrifty king rewarded him with a gift of ten, and an 
annual pension of twenty, pounds. A year later be sailed on a second 
voyage the detailed results of which we do not know ; but from various 
sources it seems probable that on this exjDedition he explored the At- 
lantic coast from Long Island to South Carolina. With this voyage 
he disappears completely ; probably he perished on it. He was not an 
educated man, like Columbus, and the English were not interested 
in discoveries. Accordingly we have in England only the barest 
documentary evidence in regard to the voyages. Both this meager 
record and the fact that English explorations were not notably con- 
tinued show how little interest our mother country had in the lands 
beyond the sea. But the agents of the Spanish and Italian govern- 
ments then in England felt a lively interest. They reported to their 
superiors all they heard about Cabot's achievements, and from this 
source we get most of our scanty information. 

John Cabot had a son, Sebastian, for thirty-six years Chief Hydrog- 
rapher of Spain and after that adviser in matters of navigation to 
the English admiralty. He was highly esteemed by his 
contemporaries and posterity. An inscription on his Qg^Q^ '" 
picture and another on a map which he made in 1544 assert 
that he was with his father when, in 1497, land was discovered in the 
north. Sebastian talked freely in Spain to persons who have reported 
his words. From these three sources grew the impression that Sebas- 
tian was a great discoverer. Some of the statements in the story are 
contradicted by the scant contemporary records which refer to John 
Cabot, and the result is a lowering in later years of the fame of the son ; 
but it is impossible to come to a satisfactory conclusion in the matter. 
England forgot the Cabots for a century. But in the days of Raleigh 
and Hakluyt she recalled them to mind, and these voyages became the 
basis of her claim to the North Atlantic coast. 

France, through the efforts of two men, took part in American ex- 
ploration. In 1524 Giovanni da Verrazano tried to find a passage to 
India by the northwest. It is difficult to determine from his narra- 


tive how much of the Atlantic coast he explored ; but it seems that 
he entered New York harbor and the Hudson river and penetrated 

Narragansett Bay, after which he sailed north as far as 
French Ex- ]S[ewfoundland. In 1534 Jacques Cartier, a Breton, sailed 
p ora 10 . ^[^Yi two ships on what proved a more important vcyage. 
Verra- ^ explored the Gulf of St. Lawrence and was forced 

home by stormy weather. Next year he came agam to 
the same place, took up his labors where he suspended them in 1534. 
and went up the St. Lawrence as far as what is now Quebec. Then 

he took rowboats, with which he reached the Indian vil- 
Cartier. j^^^ ^^ Hochelaga at the site of Montreal. The rapids 

which here stopped his search for a passage through the continent were 
later called "La Chine" in ridicule, it is said, of his attempt to find 
China through this river. Cartier's exploration was the basis of 
French title to Canada. It was followed in 1541 by an attempt to 
plant a colony, Roberval having the command and Cartier showing 
the way. A fort was built near Quebec, but the Indians drove off the 
garrison, and killed or discouraged the colonists so that they gladly 
escaped to France. 

The earliest maps after the discovery of America show us how Eu- 
rope gradually came to realize the shape of the new continent. The 

first preserved was by Juan de la Cosa (1500). He was 
Early Maps. ^^.^^^ Columbus in 1492 and 1493, and with Hojeda in 1499. 
He was informed about the other discoveries and accounted for them 
on his map. He shows the coast line of North and South America 
in the shape of a great letter U which lies on one side. The discoveries 
of Cabot represent the upper leg and the Spanish discoveries in the 
northern part of South America represent the lower leg. The curved 
interior takes the place of the shores of the Gulf of Mexico and the 
Caribbean Sea, within which the Antilles are correctly placed. North 
and south of the terminus of each leg the shores go off at right angles. 
Opposite the upper one and well out in the ocean he places the land 
discovered for Portugal by Corte-Real, not knowing it was nearly 
identical with Cabot's discovery. These Spanish, English, and Por- 
tuguese lands are located with approximate correctness, but the lines 
which connect them, the inner curved part of the figure, were drawn 
without experimental knowledge, probably by guess. 

A map made for Cantino, an Italian envoy in Portugal, about 1502, 
adheres more closely to known facts. Unknown parts of the coast 
are entirely blank, the northern part takes a vertical position, Florida 
and the shore north of it comes into a semblance of itself, and the same 
is true of South America from the Gulf of Uraba to the Tropic of 
Capricorn. A map by Stobnicza, 1512, has the parts of coast line 
omitted from the Cantino map, and one by Waldseemiiller, 15 13, gives 
an outline of the two continents with a suggestion of accuracy. A 
French globe, about 1527, shows Asia connected with South America. 


Exploring the Interior 

The second stage of exploration was directed into the interior and 
it went hand in hand with colonization, Spain taking the lead. First 
Hayti (1494) and then Cuba (1508) were settled. These 
two islands soon developed a number of vigorous Spanish- Spanish Ex- 
born grandees who were willing to attempt adventures on theTnterior" 
the unexplored mainland. Such a one was Hernando ^ortez 
Cortez, who in 15 19 sailed to conquer Mexico, the wealth 
and advanced culture of which was previously reported to the whites. 
He took with him five hundred and fifty Spaniards, two hundred and 
three Indians, one negro, and sixteen horses. He destroyed his ships 
when he landed at Vera Cruz, and announced to his men his determina- 
tion to conquer Mexico or die. At that time the Mexicans expected 
the return of a culture hero, Quetzalcoatl, who, tradition said, would 
come back to bless the people. Some of them considered the arrival of 
the Spaniards the fulfillment of the prophecy. Cortez was quick 
enough to use this opportunity, but his main reliance was his sword. 
His firearms, armor, and horses gave him an advantage, but the vast 
numbers of his enemies would have outweighed it had he been less 
capable or his enemies been well united. He forced his way to the 
Aztec city of Mexico, where the superstitious natives received him 
darkly. Fearing an outbreak he seized Montezuma, the Mexican 
ruler, and when the capital flew to arms withdrew for the time and 
established a siege which was finally successful. After two and a half 
years of severe struggle he and his little army were masters of Mexico. 

Another explorer of the interior was Balboa. He was a bankrupt 
planter who left Santo Domingo secretly to escape his creditors, 
and joined an expedition which was trying to plant a col- 
ony near the Isthmus of Panama. Small, ugly, and poor, he 
nevertheless was born to command and was soon the leading spirit 
in an otherwise failing enterprise. By his resolution he resisted all 
attempts to supplant him and finally perfomied a feat which made 
him famous. When some Spaniards were disputing over a bit of 
gold, an Indian told them he could show them a great water over 
which came quantities of the yellow metal. Balboa remembered the 
words, and with about two hundred Spaniards set out to find this sea. 
His march of forty-five miles was through a tropical tangle of jungle 
to penetrate which required the labor of eighteen days. At length 
he neared the sea. Halting his men he climbed the last impeding 
ridge so that he alone might first see the object of his search. Then 
this bankrupt adventurer, stern ruler of men, heartless betrayer of 
benefactors, and relentless victor over his personal enemies, knelt 
and thanked "God and all the Heavenly Host who had reserved the 
prize of so great a thing unto him, being a man but of small wit and 


knowledge, of little experience, and lowly parentage." Thus it was 
that Balboa discovered the Pacific Ocean in 15 13. 

More interesting but less significant historically were the explora- 
tions of Ponce de Leon in 15 13. Twenty years of adventure in the 
Ponce de West Indies had developed him into a great captain. 
Leon. He finally set out to find Bimini, a land in which the 

Indians said there was much gold and a fountain of perpetual youth. 
On Easter Sunday he discovered the mainland, which he called Florida, 
from Pascua Florida, the Easter season. He landed at St. Augustine 
harbor, and thence explored the coast southward until he passed the 
extremity of the peninsula. The name "Florida" was later used by 
Spain for the coast as far north as the Chesapeake Bay. 

Another explorer was de Narvaez. In 1527 he sailed from Spain 
for Florida with a colony of six hundred persons. Desertion and 
shipwreck reduced these to four hundred, most of whom 
landed in the western part of what is now Florida some- 
where north of Tampa Bay. Indian reports of a great town lured 
them into the interior, where they were surrounded by vast numbers 
of savages and forced back starving to the coast at Pensacola Bay. 
They built boats, converted their horses into food, made sails from 
horsehides and from their own clothes, and sailed — not for Cuba, 
but westward, where they hoped to join their fleet. In this they were 
disappointed : one by one their rude boats were destroyed : de 
Narvaez was drowned; and the remnant, now fifteen, took refuge 
with the Indians, who first beat them and then discovered that they 
were medicine-men. For five years they managed to keep in favor 
with the savages, passing from tribe to tribe in great honor. Finally 
four men, all who were left of the six hundred whom de Narvaez 
brought out nine years earlier, reached the city of Mexico. One 
of them was Cabe?a de Vaca, historian of the expedition, whose 
journal makes a thrilling narrative. He described the interior of the 
continent in glowing terms and gave a stimulus to later disastrous 
attempts at exploration. 

One of the victims of this exaggeration was Hernando de Soto, 
who having gained a fortune in Peru with Pizarro was made governor 
j^ g of Cuba and ruler of Florida, which he was to explore 

and colonize at his own expense. May 30, 1539, he 
landed at Tampa Bay with over six hundred and twenty men. He 
spent the summer and winter near the coast, and in the spring marched 
northward, across Geo^-gia, South Carolina, and part of North Caro- 
lina. He crossed the Blue Ridge Mountains in the last-named state 
near the point where rise the highest peaks of the Appalachian system, 
then turning south again reached southern Alabama in October, 
1540, always looking for "some rich country," fighting several battles 
with the Indians, and suffering much from hunger and sickness. 
De Soto learned that a fleet awaited him on the coast, but concealed 


the fact from his men and marched again for the interior. He wintered 
in northern Mississippi, and moving on in the spring came on May 8, 
1 541, to the Mississippi near Memphis. He crossed and spent the 
summer exploring what is now Arkansas. He encamped, and in 
the spring would have gone farther into the west if his men and horses 
had not failed him. Broken spirited, he fell sick, and May 21, 1542, 
he was buried in the river he had discovered. His adventures took 
three years. His followers built boats and escaped down the river 
and along the coast to Mexico. De Soto gave his fortune and his 
life to this enterprise and the result was expressed in the extension 
of geographical knowledge for the benefit of the world at large. 

In Mexico at this time a story was circulated of seven cities which 
an Indian had visited, each as great as Mexico City. The narrative 
of Cabefa de Vaca seemed to confirm it ; and the excitable 
imagination of the adventurers seized it with avidity. 
A friar sent to investigate returned, saying he came in sight of one 
of the cities, probably the pueblo of Zuni, and preparations were 
made for a conquest of this wonderful region, believed to be as rich 
as Mexico. Francisco de Coronado was appointed to lead the colony. 
He set out in 1540 With eleven hundred men, Spaniards and Indians; 
but he left the mam body on the north shore of the Gulf of California 
and went into the interior with fifty horsemen. He took Cibola, 
which proved to be a pueblo without treasure. Not discouraged, he 
ordered up the main body and struck into New Mexico. He went 
as far as the border of Oklahoma, and with an advance guard arrived 
at the center of Kansas within nine days' march of the point to which 
De Soto at that very time had penetrated in Arkansas. He found 
pueblos and Indian villages, but no treasure, and returned to Mexico 
in 1542 with the loss of only a few of his followers. Thus from 15 13 
to 1542 Spain explored Florida, Mexico, and the region north of the 
Rio Grande, discovering their real character and opening the way 
for colonization. 

Such was the work of Cortez, Balboa, Ponce de Leon, Narvaez, 
de Soto, and Coronado. They were strenuous men, sparing neither 
themselves, their followers, nor the natives, whom they Spanish 
plundered, enslaved, and slew with great cruelty. Through Colonial 
their efforts Spain in fifty years, from 1492 to 1542, explored Power, 
and held a vast region. Nor was gold-seeking their only interest : 
agricultural colonies ciuickly followed the adventurers ; and their 
strength is shown by the part they contributed to further explora- 
tions. No other colonizing nation in America did so much in so short 
a time. Had not the wars of Phillip II, soon to begin, paralyzed 
Spanish industry and checked emigration to the colonies, it seems 
likely that a very strong Spanish empire would have been established 
from Florida to the mouth of the Orinoco. 



The discovery of America has been described in many books. Among them 
the most available for American students are : Harrisse, The Discovery of North 
America (1897), scholarly and ample; Fiske, The Discovery of America, 2 vols. 
(1892), brilliant in style but disproved in some of its points by later writers ; Bourne, 
Spain 'in America (1904), the most reliable as well as the best written one-volume 
treatise on the subject in Enghsh; Winsor, Narrative and Critical History of 
America, 8 vols. (1888-1889), vol. II deals with the period of discovery, especially 
valuable for references; and Channing, History of the United Slates, vol. I (1905). 

On the Norse discoveries see: Reeves, Finding of Vineland the Good (1890), 
and Storm, Studies on the V inland Voyages (trans., 1889). 

On Columbus see: Harrisse, Christophe Colomb, 2 vols. (1884); Vignaud, 
La Vie de Colomb avant ses Decouvertes (1905); Thacher, Christopher Columbus, 
3 vols. (1903-1904) ; Winsor, Christopher Columbus (1892) ; Markham, Life of 
Columbus (1889), for the general reader; and Irving, Life of Columbus (1828- 
1831), the most widely read book on the subject, and still in demand. 

Among contemporary Spanish works the following are important: The Life 
and Actions of Admiral Columbus, ascribed to his son, Ferdinand, most valuable 
for the period after the discovery when it follows the journals of Columbus (trans, 
in Chur hill, Voyages, 1744-1746, and Pinkerton, Voyages, 1808-1814) ; Las 
Casas, Hisloria de las Indias, 5 vols, (about 1525, published 1875-1876); Peter 
Martyr, De Orbo Novo (about 1555); Oviedo, Historia General y Natural de las 
Indias, 4 vols. (ed. 1851-1855); Herrara, Historia General de las Indias (1828- 
1830); and Navarrete, Coleccion de las Viages y Descubrimientos, 5 vols. (1825- 


On Spanish explorations see Bourne, Fiske, and Winsor, as described above, 
for brief accounts in English, and Navarrete for a reliable Spanish source. On 
English voyages of exploration see Hakluyt, Principall Navigations, etc., of the 
English Nation, 16 vols. (Edinbiu-gh ed., 1 885-1 890) ; Harrisse, John Cabot . . . 
and Sebastian his Son (1896) ; Weare, Cabot's Discovery of North America (1897) ; 
Dean, chapter on Cabot in Winsor, Narrative and Critical History, vol. Ill (1884) ; 
Markham, Letters of Vespucci (1894); Helps, Life of Cortez, 2 vols. (1871) ; 
Guillemard, Life of Magellan (1891) ; Bourne, ed.. Narratives of De Soto, 2 vols. 
(1904); Winship, ed.. Journey of Coronado (1904); and Smith, Cabeca de Vaca 
(1866). Important general works on Spanish settlements are: Lowery, Spanish 
Settlements, 2 vols. (1901, 1905) ; Helps, The Spanish Conquest in America, 4 vols. 
(Oppenheim, ed., 1900-1904) ; and Bancroft, History of Central America, 3 vols. 

On the French explorations of the coast line see : Harrisse, Les Corte-Real et leur 
Voyages (1883); Murphy, The Voyage of Verrazzano (1875); Parkman, Pioneers 
of France (1865); and Gafifarel, La Floride Franqaise (1875). 

For Independent Reading 

Markham, Life of Columbus (1892) ; Irving, Life of Columbus (1828-1831) ; 
Fiske, Discovery of America, 2 vols. (1892) ; Bourne, Spain in America (1904) ; 
and Payne and Beazley, eds., Voyages of Elizabethan Seamen (1907), extracts 
from Hakluyt. 



The Gentlemen Adventurers 

NoTraNG shows better the rapid progress of Spanish colonies than 
the fact that England became interested in colonization through 
depredations on them. Captain John Hawkins, of _. 
Plymouth, Devonshire, did much to open this phase of geameif/^ 
English history. Negro slaves were in demand in Spanish Hawkins. 
colonies, and although foreigners were forbidden to trade 
there, he determined to get access to the market. In 1 563 he arrived in 
Hayti with three hundred negroes, whom the planters, not knowing the 
king's law, or disregarding it, gladly purchased. He loaded his 
ships with produce, and sailed for Europe, sending two of them to 
Spain, where they were promptly seized by the authorities. His 
courage rose with opposition, and he soon reappeared with another 
cargo. When the timid colonists hesitated to purchase, he landed an 
armed force, and frightened off the officials, whereupon the slaves 
were sold. The king — it was Philip II — now sent a fleet to enforce 
the laws. It found Hawkins, recently returned from a third voyage, 
safe in the harbor of Vera Cruz, whose defenses he had seized. He 
hesitated to appeal to force and agreed to admit the Spanish com- 
mander to the harbor on the promise of immunity from attack. 
The pledge was broken, the English being cut to pieces by the superior 
number of their opponents. Two ships escaped, one commanded 
by Hawkins, the other by his nephew, Francis Drake. 

Both men were henceforth implacable enemies to the Spaniards. 
They became the center of a group of hardy captains who dealt 
Spanish ships many a blow, and who at last united to 
overthrow in 1588 The Invincible Armada which Philip 
sent against England. Their most notable single adventure was when 
Drake in 1578 in The Pelican sailed around South America, took 
great quantities of gold from unwary Spaniards, explored the west 
coast to the forty-eighth parallel, and circumnavigating the globe re- 
turned to England to be knighted for his success. These adventures 
revived English interest in America and promoted colonization. 

Hawkins and Drake had many imitators. One of them, Sir Hum- 
phrey Gilbert, in 157S received from Queen Elizabeth a patent grant- 



ing him power, civil and proprietary, over all lands which he might 
colonize not held by a Christian prince. He wished to discover a 

northwest passage to China, and believed that a colony 

in America would be a useful base for his explorations. 
In the same year he went out with seven ships, one commanded 
by his half-brother, Walter Raleigh, then twenty-six years old. The 
expedition encountered the Spaniards, and soon returned to England. 
In 1583 Gilbert sailed to Newfoundland to plant a colony there, but 
he was lost in a storm and his expedition failed. He was a model 
knight and Christian, and his last known words shouted from the deck 
of his little ship, then battling for life in the waves, — "The way to 
heaven is as near by sea as by land," — have often been repeated by 

Walter Raleigh took up his dead brother's work, the queen issuing 
a new charter, and in 1584 he sent two ships under Philip Amadas 
_ and Arthur Barlowe to explore the Atlantic coast before 

attempting to plant a colony. With an eye on the rich 
Spanish galleons, which English captains were accustomed to plunder 

on sight, they first sailed to the West Indies, then turning 
oedU'on" northward came to the coast near Cape Lookout, North 

Carolina, and skirting the shore found an inlet which 
does not now exist, and so came in July through Pamlico Sound to 
Roanoke Island. The rich vegetation, the abundance of fish, and the 
friendliness of the natives delighted them, and they returned with 
wonderful stories of what they saw. They reported an abundance 
of grapes, which abound in that locality to this day ; and they found 
something — probably the persimmon — which they took for the 
date. Their written description of the place was designed to enlist 
the efforts of future adventurers, please the queen, and increase the 
glory of their employer. Elizabeth was enough gratified to confer 
knighthood on Raleigh, and to call the country Virginia in token of 
her unmarried state. 

In 1585 Raleigh sent Ralph Lane, a brave, tactless captain of 
infantry, with a hundred men to land at Roanoke Island, make a 

better investigation of the interior, and select a site for 
pedition ^' ^ permanent settlement. He explored Albemarle Sound, 

went up the Roanoke river until he realized that it was not 
a northwest passage, and heard from the Indians of Chesapeake Bay, 
which he properly concluded was better suited than Roanoke Island 
for the proposed colony. His abrupt manner brought him the hostility 
of the Indians, his supplies were soon gone, and when in 1586 Sir 
Francis Drake came to the coast, after a profitable cruise in the West 
Indies, Lane was glad to embark for England. A few days later 
Sir Richard Grenville touched at the place with supplies and recruits. 
He left fifteen men with food to hold the country in the name of the 
English and sailed off to the West Indies to capture Spanish treasure. 


Raleigh now prepared to plant a permanent colony. May 8, 1587, 
he sent out three ships with one hundred and fifty colonists, twenty- 
five of whom were women and children. The commander 
was John White, who was with Lane in 1 5 85 and who showed pgdition^" 
his confidence in the enterprise by bringing with him 
his own daughter, Eleanor, and her husband, Annanias Dare. White 
was to pick up the garrison left by Grenville and plant the "Citie of 
Raleigh in Virginia" on the Chesapeake. But arrived at Roanoke 
the hired captain refused to go farther, and when White and the men 
of the colony were on shore, put their effects on land and sailed away 
with two of the ships. A more resolute explorer than White, as 
Cortez or De Soto, would have gone on board, overpowered the cap- 
tain, and taken the ships to their proper destination. 

The island was inaccessible from the sea and its soil was poor. 
The colonists soon became discouraged and urged White to return 
to England for supplies. Late in August he set sail in 
the one ship at the disposal of the settlers, leaving behind Colony "^ 
him a granddaughter, Virginia Dare, born August 18, 
the first offspring of the English race in what is now the United States. 
England at that moment was expecting the arrival of the Spanish 
Armada, and a strict embargo was laid on shipping. White was 
forced to remain in the country, and it was not until 1591 that he 
came, in a hired ship, to ascertain the fate of the colony. The island 
was deserted, the fort was in ruins, and the only evidence of the fate 
of the colonists was the word "Croatoan" carved on a tree. It was 
the name of a friendly tribe of Indians dwelling near Cape Hatteras. 
Before his departure it was agreed that if the colonists removed they 
would carve the name of their place of refuge on a tree, and if they 
went in distress a cross was to be added. As no cross appeared. White 
took courage. He would have gone to Croatoan, but the captain 
of the fleet, fearful of storms, would not delay, and spite of later 
efforts of Raleigh to find them, the colonists were never seen again 
by white men. The settlers at Jamestown, planted twenty years 
later, learned from the Indians that the people of Roanoke went to 
the Indians, but were later massacred through the agency of Pow- 
hatan. The Indians added that four men, two boys, and one maid 
were saved by a friendly chief. If so, they were probably adopted 
into the tribe according to the Indian custom.^ 

The enterprise at Roanoke Island wasted Raleigh's fortune, and 
the colony itself was a failure, but he kept up his interest 
in Virginia, saying in 1602 when about to be sent to the of^o^nokr 
Tower, "I shall yet live to see it an English nation." island. 
He did, indeed, at Roanoke Island plant the seed which 

'The claim that the mixed breeds of Robeson county, N. C, formerly known as Scuffle- 
tonians, recently called "Croatans," are descended from the "Lost Colony" is unsup- 
ported by evidence and highly improbable. 


produced fruit at Jamestown. His failure contained a lesson and 
showed the place at which success would be found. His faith in the 
expansion of English power was communicated to others, the pathetic 
fate of his colony hung over the imagination of his countrymen, 
and the cause of colonization was not forgotten. 

Raleigh's misfortunes showed that planting a colony was a large 
work and that it demanded the support of many people. He, indeed, 
realized this, and in 1589 assigned to a group of " Associ- 
o pera on. ^^^^yy ^j^^ right to establish a colony in Virginia. Among 
them were ten men who were later connected with the Virginia 
Company. One of them was Richard Hakluyt, who in 1584 presented 
the queen with A Discourse of Western Planting, a little book of 
arguments to show why Elizabeth ought to encourage colonies. 
The appeal failed completely. English sovereigns never expended 
money in founding or nourishing colonies in America. Among 
Raleigh's "associates" was Thomas Smythe, a prominent merchant, 
and either he or his son by the same name was treasurer of the Virginia 
Company. In 1603 Raleigh was convicted of treason and the assign- 
ment of 1589 became null. 

The English opinion of Virginia at this time came from the reports 

of Raleigh's captains and was influenced by the Spanish experience 

in Mexico and Peru. The popular imagination added 

Exaggerated j^u^h to these already exaggerated impressions. A 

Virginia. favorite comedy of the day, "Eastward Ho," gives the 

following exposition of Virginia in 1605: 

"Seagull. A whole country of English is there, bred of those that were left 
there in '79 [1587]; thej^ have married with the Indians . . . who are so in love 
with them that all the treasures they have they lay at their feet. 

" Scapelhrift. But is there such treasure there, Captain, as I have heard? 

"Seagull. I tell thee gold is more plentiful there than copper is with us; and 
for as much red copper as I can bring I'll have thrice the weight in gold. Why 
man, all their dripping pans . . . are pure gold ; and all the chains with which 
they chain up their streets arc massy gold, all the prisoners they take are fettered 
in gold; and for rubies and diamonds they go forth on holidays and gather 'em 
by the seashore to hang on their children's coats, and stick in their children's 
caps, as commonly as our children wear saffron-gilt brooches and groats with holes 
in 'em. 

"Scapelhrift. And is it a pleasant country withal? 

"Seagull. As ever the sun shined on : temperate, and full of all sorts of excellent 
viands ; wild boar is as common there as our tamest bacon is here ; and venison 
as mutton. And then you shall hve freely there, without sergeants, or courtiers, 
or lawyers . . . Then for your means of advancement, there it is simple and not 
preposterously mixed. You may be an alderman there and never be scavenger; 
you may be any other officer and never be a slave. You may come to preferment 
enough, ... to riches and fortune enough, and have never the more villany nor 
the less wit. Besides, there we shall have no more law than conscience, and not 
too much of either; serve God enough, eat and drink enough, and enough is as 
good as a feast." 


The Beginning of Virginia 

Various adventurous sea captains were on the American coasts 
early in the seventeenth century, and they probably gave the impulse 
which resulted in renewed efforts to people the country. 
Two whose names stand out are George Weymouth and London 
Bartholomew Gosnold. They offered their ships and their *"°™^^°^ 
services and tried to get others to raise funds to send oyth com- 
out colonies. They succeeded in enlisting the support pany. 
of a number of gentlemen and merchants, and applied 
to the king for permission to plant two colonies, — one in the south, 
where Raleigh's efforts were spent, and one in the north, in a region 
whose resources of fur, timber, and fisheries had attracted the atten- 
tion of Weymouth and others. The request was granted, and April 10, 
1606, two groups of "adventurers," one resident in London and the 
other in Plymouth, Bristol, and other towns, were authorized to plant 
the "First Colony" and the "Second Colony" respectively. The 
London Company, as the first group came to be called, was to plant 
between the thirty-fourth and forty-first degrees of north latitude, 
and the Plymouth Company between the thirty-eighth and forty- 
fifth degrees ; but it was provided that when one colony was estab- 
lished the other should not be placed within a hundred miles of it. 
Each was to have jurisdiction over a region one hundred miles square, 
fifty on each side, north and south, of its first settlement, and one 
hundred into the interior. Various privileges were granted to each, 
among them authority to open mines, grant lands, coin money, 
defend themselves against intruders, and import certain articles for 
seven years without duty. 

Raleigh's grant said little about the government of the colony 
he should plant, the inference being that this was a matter left largely 
in the hands of the proprietor. The grants of 1606 show 
a better developed idea of a colonial system. The colony The King's 
was to be a national undertaking, dependent, not on v*®* ° 
parliament, but on the king. He created the charter oovern- 
and reserved for himself the ultimate jurisdiction over ment. 
the colonial government. He also issued "instructions," 
in which was established or modified the internal constitution of the 
proposed colony. His direct representative was the superior council 
of Virginia, consisting of thirteen members appointed by the king. 
Virginia, as then conceived, was an immense domain in which could 
be established eight seacoast colonies, each one hundred miles square. 
The government now devised was to apply to the First and Second 
Colonies, and probably to all others to be set up in Virginia. 

Within the colony was to be a resident council of not more than 
thirteen members, appointed temporarily by the superior council 


in London. It was to choose its president annually, and its func- 
tions were four: (i) to make ordinances in matters not touching life 

and members, such ordinances to be in keeping with 
Sithin°thr* ^^^ "instructions" and with English law, and to be in 
Colony. force until repealed by the king ; (2) to sit as a court of 

justice ; (3) to appoint minor ofhcials ; and (4) to exercise 
the functions of local administration. The "instructions" also estab- 
lished the Church of England and prescribed exile for persons preach- 
ing against it. There was to be a Cape Merchant, or treasurer, to 
receive the goods sent to the colony and to sell those sent home. 
He was to administer the common store, to which every man's produce 
should go for five years. The inhabitants were to have the personal 
and property rights of British subjects, and trial by jury was not to 
be denied. 

The Second Colony, sent out by the Plymouth Company, sailed 
August 12, 1606. It was a small oq^edition and was taken by the 

Spaniards. The failure did not discourage the Company, 
Colony on ^ ^^lo next year sent one hundred and twenty settlers to 
bgc, the mouth of the Kennebec. A bitter winter and other 

hardships discouraged them, and they returned to Eng- 
land in 1608. 

The London Company, moving more slowly, sent forth a larger 
number of adventurers. December 20, 1606, they sailed from London, 

one hundred and twenty men, without women and children, 
Settlers. ^^ three ships. The Sarah [Susan] Constant, The Goods peed, 

and The Discovery. Captain Christopher Newport, a seaman 
experienced in the war against the Spaniards, commanded the expedi- 
tion on the sea and was instructed to remain two months in Virginia 
making explorations. He carried a mysterious sealed packet, to be 
opened twenty-four hours after he made land, containing the names 
of the all-powerful seven who should make the governing council. 
Several men of high birth and pretensions were on board, and during 
the four months the little fleet took to pass first the Canaries, then to 
the West Indies, and thence northward to the Chesapeake, there was 
much speculation and some heart-burning in anticipation of the assign- 
ment of the coming honors. One man aboard was Captain John 
Smith, a veritable soldier of fortune, without family connections 
to speak of. He had real ability, but was probably aggressive and 
boastful. He drew to himself a group of supporters, which displeased 
Edward Maria Wingfield, a proud man of high birth, who charged 
Smith with plotting mutiny, and got him put in irons for the rest of 
the voyage. April 26, Old Style, they sighted the Virginia capes and 
named them Henry and Charles after the two sons of their king. 
Before them was Hampton Roads, and beyond that a great river 
which they called the James. Seeking to reach it they were impeded 
by shallows, till at last they found the channel close to a spit of land, 


which in gratitude they called Point Comfort. At last the sealed 
packet was opened. The three captains of the ships, Newport, 
Gosnold, and Ratcliffe, with Wingfield, Smith, and two others were 
to be the council. Wingfield's ascendancy was complete ; he was 
elected president, but Smith, though given his liberty, was not allowed 
to sit in the council. 

The colonists now divided into two parts ; one explored the river 
and bay and the other proceeded to lay out a town. The site was a 
peninsula thirty-two miles from the mouth of the lames, ^ 


large enough for a town and some fields. It was connected 
with the mainland by a narrow neck and was easily defensible. 
Though lying low, it was as high as most of the bank up to that point. 
The channel cut the southwest end and made a low bluff so that the 
ships could be tied up to the shore. Here a fort was constructed, 
with a church and a storehouse. In the rear of these was laid out 
a little street along which huts were built. The town was named 
Jamestown. June 15 the fort was completed, and the colonists felt 
safe against the Indians. A week later Captain Newport returned 
to England. He carried a quantity of pyrites which he took for gold. 
He valued it so highly, that arriving on the English shore he dared 
not leave his ship and proceed to London, lest the precious stuff be 

Virginia presented a fair appearance to the colonists. The great 
oaks, pines, and cypresses, with grapevines as large as a man's leg, 
showed the fertility of the soil. The great sturgeons 
in the river, the luscious oysters on the rocks, mussels c^^rms 
with pearls in them, flowers in the woods, strawberries 
twice as large as those of England, and many other things filled with 
admiration the imaginative gentlemen adventurers. They roamed 
through the woods in ecstasy. Every new bird, every shady nook 
carpeted with flowers, every fine view of river or grassy marsh, brought 
forth expressions of delight, as we may see from the writings of several 
of the more bookish members of the colony. It would be interesting 
to know what the laborers thought, who came to convert all this 
forest beauty into patient, corn-growing fields. The Indians at this 
time no longer looked on the whites with wonder. Spanish and 
English ships had inflicted enough cruelty to place war in their hearts. 
The Paspaheghs controlled the region and resented the intrusion at 
Jamestown. No treaty was offered them, and they would have 
destroyed the intruders had they found an opportunity. 

The sultry August days brought disaster. Gentle George Percy 
describes the situation with pathetic briefness. "The sixt day of 
August," he says, "there died John Asbie, of the bloudie 
Flixe. The ninth day, died George Fiowre, of the swelling, l^^^°^^e 
the tenth day, died Wflliam Bruster Gentleman, of a 
wound given by the Savages, and was buried the eleventh day. The 


fourteenth day, Jerome Olikock, Ancient [i.e. Ensign], died of 
a wound. The same day, Francis Midwinter, and Edward Moris 
Corporall died suddenly." Thus runs the account throughout 
August, closing with this, "Our men were destroyed with cruell 
diseases, such as Swellings, Flixes, Burning Fevers, and by warres ; 
and some departed suddenly; but for the most part, they died of 
meere famine. ... It pleased God, after a while, to sende those peo- 
ple which were our mortall enemies, [the Indians] to relieve us with 
victuals, as Bread, Corne, Fish, and Flesh in great plentie; which 
was the setting up of our feeble men : otherwise we had all perished." 
This fortunate succor came from Powhatan, who lived on the York 
river, and from Indians south of the James, who were pleased to give 
food for trinkets. Captain John Smith going to them for trade. 

The starving settlers turned against Wingfield, who could think 
of no better means of meeting the difficulties than to husband the small 
store of food until help arrived from England. The 
Services of resourcefulness of Smith now attracted attention, and he 
John Smith, ^as admitted to the council. Soon afterwards this 
body deposed the president and placed Ratcliffe in his 
place. Smith then became the most active man in the colony. He 
was sent out to trade with the natives, and besides securing food won 
their respect, so that even the Paspaheghs became friendly. January 8, 
1608, Newport, returning with supplies and no recruits, found the 
colony safe, although the numbers were reduced to 40. He was ordered 
by the Company to bring back a valuable cargo, and three months 
were spent in getting lumber to fill his ships. The time should have 
been given to clearing the forest for grain. As it was, when planting 
time came only four acres could be put into cultivation. A hundred 
would not have been too much. In August disease and famine reap- 
peared and the population was reduced to 50. Then Newport reap- 
peared, and precious time and strength must be given to the preparation 
of his cargo. Under such circumstances the arrival of a "supply" 
was a questionable benefit. In 1608 Smith became president, and 
when all the other councillors died he would not appoint successors, 
but ruled alone. The people accepted him, and in the spring of 1609 
he got 40 acres into cultivation. He also erected better houses and 
dug a well, at that place a work of a few hours. Although a physician 
was among the colonists, the brackish river had for two years furnished 
the drinking water. 

In the autumn of 1609 Smith returned to England, and the winter 
which followed was termed "the starving time." The population, 
" Th <? largely increased by recent arrivals, was reduced from 

ingTime." " 5°° ^^ ^°- Some of the sufferers were tempted to canni- 
balism, and one desperate man threw his Bible into the 
fire, crying, "There is no God in heaven!" When Sir Thomas 
Gates, a new governor, arrived in the spring he decided the experiment 


was a failure and embarked the whole company for England. Before 
he left the river he encountered still another governor, Delaware, 
with supplies and recruits. All returned to Jamestown, where the 
situation became a little better. 

In 1609 the government by council was abandoned and a governor 
appointed with practically the authority of military law. Such a 
man was Delaware, who was too mild to be a despot. 
In 161 1 he returned to England, remaining governor till Councils 
his death in 1618, and ruling Virginia through a deputy. Abolished, 
governor. In this capacity came Sir Thomas Dale, 
1611-1616, as bitter a tyrant as ever held office in America. There 
was much to excuse his harshness. He found on his arrival that no 
crops were planted, although the planting season was past. The 
men's chief occupation was bowling in the streets, the houses were 
falling in pieces, and the Indians were defiant. He turned on New- 
port, who had continually deceived England about the state of the 
colony, pulled his beard in public, threatened to hang him, 

and asked " wheather it ware meant that the people heere ^^ ^^ 

.,• • • 1 1 1 r 1 )) TT 1 1 trovernor. 

m Virgmia shoulde feede upon trees. He set the colo- 
nists to digging sassafras roots and hewing cedar for the profit of the 
Company. The spiritless inhabitants did not resist, but fled to the 
woods : when he took them he burned them at the stake. For steal- 
ing food some were hanged, and one was tied to a tree to starve. 

The food was bad, either because the contractors cheated the Com- 
pany, or because provisions spoiled in transit. There was much com- 
plaint, and Dale devised a scheme of relief. He distributed 

small lots of land to the people, and all who had come as /y*" a^^°^ 
11 • 1 r T • r 1 °' Land, 

laborers were given one month of the year to raise food 

for themselves. Another group, probably all who were not laborers, 
were called farmers and given three acres of land each, for which 
they paid to the company each year seven and a half barrels of corn 
and one month's labor. It was exorbitant rent, but when men di- 
rected their own labor they worked as much in one day as formerly 
in a week. 

The large number of gentlemen adventurers who came to the colony 
had a bad effect. They came hoping to find gold as Spanish gentle- 
men had found it in Central America, but they were 
nevertheless honestly desirous of building up the enter- .^ ® ^ Serv- 
prise. Unaccustomed to labor they did not readily take 
up the hard work of clearing the fields, and despair, disease, and 
death found them an easy prey. Not used to superior authority 
they turned to intrigue. On this group fell Dale hke a thunderbolt. 
He had no troops to enforce his orders, but his iron will served instead. 
Hardened soldier that he was, he found it the most difficult task of his 
life. When he left Virginia in 1 6 1 6 the days of illusion were passed and 
the colonists realized that the chief thing was to develop the agri- 


cultural resources of*-<a fertile country. They then numbered 350 and 
were well supplied with cattle and hogs. It was within this period 
that the possibilities of tobacco were discovered. Virginia now had a 
profitable money crop, great estates became possible, and the early 
aristocratic impulses of the settlers might reassert themselves. 

Better Times in the Colony 

Meanwhile the London Company cast off its early enthusiasm. 
The public-spirited gentlemen who founded it soon ceased to con- 
tribute to its support. Threatened with failure, its friends 
Changes in attempted to make it a national trading company. The 
pany °™' clergy lent their influence on missionary grounds, with 
the result that the membership grew to 765, only 225 of 
whom were of the gentry. A share cost twelve pounds and ten 
shillings, and in 161 2 the king permitted all important business to be 
transacted by a majority of the stockholders. Now appeared at the 
quarterly meetings a group in support of the king's ideas and a popular 
party who declared that prosperity would not come to the colony 
until self-government was granted. Such a suggestion was abhorrent 
to James I, but the misery under the king's plan was evident and the 
liberals triumphed in 1618. They were ably led by Sir Edwin Sandys, 
ever the friend of liberal ideas. 

Sir George Yardley, governor, arrived at Jamestown April 19, 
16 1 9, announcing the permanent end of common property and the 
beginning of self-government. Each colonist was to 
Q, . have an assignment of land — one hundred acres for 

those who came before 1616 and fifty for those who came 
afterwards. The laws were to be made by an assembly composed of 
a governor and six councillors appointed by the company and two 
representatives elected by each town, hundred, or plantation. The 
governor and council had executive functions, assigned land, sat as 
a high court of justice, and composed the upper house of the assembly. 
The most honorable position in Virginia next to the governor was the 
councillor. The representatives made the House of Burgesses, or 
lower house. The assembly was to make laws not contrary to English 
laws and subject to veto in England. In the main, this was the frame 
of government for Virginia and the other royal colonies until the 

Tobacco was now worth five shillings a pound in London, but the 
price fell rapidly. One man on cleared ground could raise, in 1649, 
about 2000 pounds. Fifty acres of land, known as a 
Annulled ^^^^ right, was given to each adult immigrant who 
settled in the colony, and fifty to a master for each serv- 
ant. Sir Edwin Sandys, the Company's treasurer, worked inde- 
fatigably to bring people to a country where wealth and liberty were 


promised, and his success was marked. But the^ourt party intrigued 
against him. They convinced the king that Virginia was a nest of 
sedition, and he set himself to defeat the reelection of the treasurer. 
"Choose the devil if you will," he said to the stockholders, "but not 
Sir Edwin Sandys." This warning was too plain to be mistaken, and 
the liberal faction elected the Earl of Southampton, as progressive as 
his predecessor. James's suspicions were not allayed, and many 
advisers incited his anger, among them the Spanish minister, Gon- 
domar, who resented the intrusion of the settlement into what he 
considered Spanish territory. In 1623 one of his tools published a 
paper called "The Unmasking of Virginia," bitterly attacking the 
company and the colony. James sent a biased commission to Virginia 
to investigate, and on its report brought suit to annul the charter. 
All the past misfortunes were laid at the door of the London Company, 
and June 16, 1624, the Company fell, Virginia passing into the hands 
of the king. He probably intended to undo the liberal reforms, but 
he died within a year, and Charles I, more friendly than his father, 
allowed them to continue. Thus the first law-making assembly es- 
tablished in America remained as a model for the colonies not yet 
created, and liberal government under royal supervision became 
firmly rooted in our life. 

The governors sent by Charles were no worse than those sent by 
the Company. They had frequent quarrels with the assembly, which 
became the defender of colonial rights against the royal 
prerogative. Sometimes the council sided with them. Governors 
and in 1635 it even deposed Governor Harvey, who tried 
to lay taxes without an act of assembly and to remove ofificials by his 
mere word. He was promptly restored by King Charles, who re- 
sented the unmaking of a governor. But the king was greatly beset 
by his own enemies, and vacillated from party to party. He soon 
sent a liberal governor, and then changing again, sent in 1642 a sup- 
porter of the royal prerogative. Sir William Berkeley, destined to 
rule long in Virginia. Berkeley was a stout aristocrat and a sup- 
porter of the king's prerogative, but he was honest, and his adminis- 
tration was a period of economic prosperity. 

Planting the first permanent colony cost the English stock dearly. 
When it ceased to exist in 1624 the London Company had expended 
200,000 pounds, equal to $5,000,000 in American values of to-day, 
and from this large expenditure the return was very slight. In the 
same period it sent to Virginia over 14,000 persons, nearly 13,000 
of whom died from exposure and disease. But in spite of this waste 
of money and life the first lessons of colonization were learned for the 
benefit of colonies to be established in the future, and Virginia re- 
mained a permanent home of white men. 

Two Indian wars fell heavily on the colony within the early period 
of its existence, one in 1622 and another in 1644. Eoch marked an 


attempt of the natives to save their land from the occupation of the 
strangers. Before the first of these attacks relations with the savages 
were peaceful, owing in the first instance to the exertions of Captain 
Smith and after that to the good will of Powhatan, head chief of a 
confederacy which included at least thirty-four tribes. His good will 
was much influenced by his daughter Pocohontas, who probably saved 
the life of Smith, made many visits to Jamestown, and finally married 
Rolfe, one of the colonists. In 1618 Powhatan died, and his able 
brother, Opechancanough, who disliked the English and wished to 
expel them before it was too late, began to plot war. In March, 
1622, the tribes generally went on the warpath, and swept through 
the outlying plantations with a trail of blood. Nearly 400 persons 
perished, and the planters who survived the first attack fled to the 
older settlements. They were compelled to leave their cattle behind, 
which, with their homes, were destroyed. As soon as the spring crops 
were planted the whites divided in bands and took a terrible vengeance. 
For twenty-two years there was peace. But Opechancanough, at last 
the head chief, only waited an opportunity. In 1644 there was civil 
war in England, and he thought the expected moment was at hand. 
Old and blind as he was he acted with energy, and in two days over 
300 settlers were slain. Again the whites took up arms, and in 1646 
the aged head chief himself was taken and killed. In this struggle 
the savages lost heavily and were forced to make a treaty by which 
they retired from the region between the James and the York rivers. 
Thenceforth tidewater Virginia had peace. 

The Settlement of Maryland 

In 1609 the London Company's jurisdiction was fixed at 200 miles 
north and south of Old Point Comfort, and it was to extend westward 

through this region to the Mississippi. The Jamestown 
Dhdded settlement was not thought to have jurisdiction over all 

this area; for in 1619 the Company granted privileges 
to the Pilgrims from Leyden, which, but for the unfavorable voyage 
of the Mayflower, would have resulted in a coordinate colony near 
the Delaware. With the fall of the Company, 1624, all Virginia again 
became the king's, and soon afterwards he cut off from it two great 
proprietary provinces. One, lying on the south of Virginia proper, 
he gave to Sir Robert Heath, 1629, who did not improve it, and the 
other was given to George Calvert, Lord Baltimore, who thus became 
the founder of Maryland. 

Calvert was a member of the London Company and a 
^^L^d*'^* favorite with the king. In 1625 he announced himself 
Baltimore. ^ Catholic, resigned the principal secretaryship of state, 

and gave himself up to colonization. His first attempt 
was in Newfoundland, but it failed through the cold climate, and he 


turned to Virginia, asking in the first instance for a grant of the 
lands between the James river and Albemarle Sound. To this 
request the friends of Virginia objected, and he was satisfied with a 
grant north of the Potomac, extending as far as the fortieth degree of 
latitude. To the colony, the charter of which was signed June 20, 
1632, the king gave the name Maryland, in honor of his queen, Hen- 
rietta Maria. 

By the Maryland charter a government was created less liberal 
than that of the London Company. The model on which it was 
formed was the County Palatine of Durham, in northern 
England. The proprietor, Baltimore, was to have in ^^® ^°^~. 
the colony the same authority as the Bishop of Durham Ma^iand!^ 
had in the county, of whom the old motto of law ran, 
Quicquid Rex habet extra, Episcopus habet intra. Thus the proprietor, 
besides having possession of the land, was the head of the adminis- 
trative, judicial, and military functions. The legislative function had 
no place in the system in force in Durham, and in this respect the 
Maryland system was more liberal ; for it provided that the proprietor 
might make laws in keeping with those of England "with the advice, 
assent, and approbation of the freemen or the major part of them or 
their representatives." The inhabitants were thus to have a share in 
law making, but the proprietor could have the initiative and might 
exercise a veto. By the charter the church of Maryland was to con- 
form to the laws of England, and the right to nominate clergymen was 
reserved to the proprietor. He was to hold his estate at only a nom- 
inal rent, and without taxes to the royal treasury. 

George Calvert, first Lord Baltimore, died as his charter was about 
to be signed, and Maryland passed to his son, Cecilius, a wise and 
liberal-minded man. He proceeded with the work of 
colonization, and in October, 1633, sent two ships with xoier'ati'^n 
twenty gentlemen and about two hundred laborers to 
make the first settlement. With them went his brother, Leonard, as 
governor. He and most of the gentlemen were Catholics, and most of 
the laborers Protestants. In a country as strongly anti-Catholic 
as England it behooved the Cal verts to be tolerant, but there is no 
reason to think that the liberty of conscience which they granted in 
Maryland did not arise from their sense of justice and liberality. 
At any rate, at a time when Virginia drove out non-conformists and 
Massachusetts persecuted Roger Williams, Maryland was the home 
of religious freedom. Toleration attracted to Maryland people of 
varying religious belief. Unfortunately, they were not so liberal as 
the proprietor, and when strong enough began to persecute one an- 
other, until civil war at last appeared in the colony. 

English Catholics suffered much from the laws against their faith, 
and it was thought that they would gladly seek an asylum in America. 
They were fined for not attending the established church, keeping 


arms in their houses, educating their children abroad, maintaining 
CathoHc schoolmasters, and converting Protestants to Catholicism. 

They might not be legally married by their own clergy. 
Would the serve as executors, or be buried in their own church- 
Migrate? yards. Fines were collected from them persistently : even 

James I, who had sympathy for their faith, took thirty- 
six thousand pounds a year in this way. For these reasons Catholics 
were deeply discouraged. But when Baltimore's charter was at 
length signed. King James was dead, and the English church seemed 
tending toward Catholicism. Laud was establishing high church 
practices and harrowing the Puritans, and the new king was giving 
willing approval. So hopeful were the Catholics of better times in 
England that the expected emigration did not occur, and Baltimore, 
who wished to see the colony grow, was the more willing to receive 
settlers of other faiths. 

The first colony entered Chesapeake Bay late in February, 1634, 
giving thanks to Providence for bringing them through many 

storms. They were struck with admiration for the 
The settle- Potomac, "in comparison with which the Thames seemed 
Mary^s. " ^ rivulet." Near its mouth was a tributary which they 

called St. George : nine miles up its course they laid out 
a town and called it St. Mary's. The site was occupied by the Indians. 
Mindful of Captain Smith's experience in Virginia the Marylanders 
resorted to trade, and for some axes, knives, cloth, and hoes purchased 
the village. The neighboring savages were weak, and, suffering much 
from the Susquehannas, who lived near the mouth of the river which 
now bears their name, received the whites gladly, and were converted 
to Christianity by the Jesuits. Leonard Calvert took up the work of 
establishing his colony in an orderly manner, profiting by Virginia's 
experience. The Indian fields were put in corn and tobacco and 
other land was cleared, the location selected was dry and healthy, and 
land was assigned individually from the first. The delusion of gold- 
hunting never troubled the colony. The result was that the first 
year a shipload of corn could be sent to New England to exchange 
for salt fish. Maryland was planted without a "starving time." 

February 26, 1635, the colonists held an assembly. They were 
not authorized to do it by the proprietor, but thought the charter 

gave them permission. They sent a number of laws to 
Independ- England, where Baltimore disallowed them because he 
Assembly! intended to have the initiative in law making. Three 

years later he sent a body of laws which were submitted 
to a second assembly. He now learned how little the right of initiating 
law is worth when the representatives are in a bad humor ; for the 
assembly was overwhelmingly against his code. Baltimore was a 
wise ruler and would not press his point. He authorized his brother, 
Governor Calvert, to allow the assembly to make laws as they desired, 


to be in force till he should pass on them in England. The proprietor 
tried again in 1649 to introduce a system of law favorable to his pre- 
dominance, and failed again. In 1650 Maryland was given a legis- 
lature with two houses, one composed of representatives and the other 
of the councillors and persons specially summoned by the governor. 

Baltimore learned in another way that the feudal ideas of the 
Stuarts could not be grafted on society in America. In pursuance of 
his grant he created manors consisting of one thousand 
or more acres. The lord of the manor was authorized Short-Liyed 

1.1 , I'll-- . • ^ J Manorial 

to hold manor courts, to which his tenants might come system. 

and vote under his direction. The tenants consisted of 

English laborers who might soon become farm owners. They felt 

the impulse to freedom which inhered in a society the natural basis of 

which was the ability to work. They took control of the lord's courts, 

held local popular meetings, and in a short time the Maryland manors 


The Jesuits themselves felt the force of democracy. They were 
much interested in the experiment and used the opportunity to ac- 
quire large tracts of land, — some from the proprietor 
and some from the Indians, who trusted them. They checked!^ ^ 
began to talk of the supremacy of the church law over the 
proprietor and assembly. Lord Baltimore was a true Catholic, but 
he was not intolerant, and he realized that if the Jesuits obtained 
control, public opinion in England would demand the destruction of 
this cherished asylum for his fellow-believers. He sent an agent to 
Maryland to check the extreme Catholics there. The Jesuits re- 
sented this and talked of excommunication. The proprietor then 
took decisive action. In 1641 he issued new regulations to control 
the granting of land, and one provision was that lands should not be 
granted in mortmain; that is, to religious societies. In the same 
sagacious spirit he sought to restrain religious disputation between 
the two religious groups, and in 1643 he went so far as to send notice 
to New England that all creeds would be protected in Maryland. 
All these efforts brought slight increase of population. Protestants 
preferred to settle in one of the Protestant colonies and Catholics 
were not going to America in large numbers. The most notable ac- 
cession was the removal of more than one thousand Puritans from 
southern Virginia to escape Berkeley's strict regulations. 

Virginia did not relish the loss of what she considered her territory 
north of the Potomac. In 1630 she sent one cf her chief citizens, 
William Claiborne, to England to try to defeat Balti- 
more's plans. He did not succeed, and returned to Vir- Controversy 
• • • 1 1 1 1 TT !• 1 . 1 i • over Kent s 

gmia m a mood to make trouble. He lived at what is island. 

now Hampton, Virginia, but was engaged in the fur trade 

on the northern shores of the Chesapeake, and had a trading station 

with a fort and a small garrison on Kent's Island, within Baltimore's 


grant. Governor Leonard Calvert held that it ought to fall under 
Maryland jurisdiction, and the terms of the charter supported him. 
But Claiborne held that as it was settled under Virginia authority 
before the charter was issued it ought to remain under that juris- 
diction. When, therefore, Calvert called on Claiborne to submit 
to Maryland, the latter refused and Virginia supported him. Rival 
fur traders stirred up feeling at St. Mary's, and August 5, 1635, they 
seized one of Claiborne's pinnaces. The Virginian was a high-spirited 
man and retaliated, blood being shed on both sides. Neither party 
cared to go further, and for nearly three years there was no more 
trouble, Claiborne continuing most of the time to trade in Maryland 
in defiance of Calvert. He was confident of his position, and in 1637 
went to England on business. Governor Calvert then sent a force 
which surprised Kent's Island by night and forced its inhabitants to 
submit to his government. The following year Claiborne was at- 
tainted of treason by the Maryland assembly, and one of his followers 
was hanged for having committed manslaughter in one of the recent 
encounters. At the same time royal commissioners decided that the 
disputed island belonged to Lord Baltimore. Claiborne submitted 
unwillingly and bided his time. He had lost his island, but he found 
a means of annoying Maryland. 

From 1630 to 1650 Englishmen were divided into a king's party and 
a parliamentary party. The old court party of the London Company, 

still intriguing for the restoration of their charter, favored 
Maryland |-]^g king, who in 1630 sent John Harvey to rule Virginia 
PoUtics'by* ^^ ^^^ interest of the royal prerogative. The former 
Virginians. supporters of Sandys and Southampton were still active 

and were very strong in Virginia, where Claiborne was 
one of their leaders. In 1635 they deposed the governor and sent 
him to England with charges of misconduct. Lord Baltimore 
was a supporter of the king and a friend of John Harvey. He used 
his influence with Charles and got the deposed governor restored ; 
but in 1639 the king felt the need of the liberal party and replaced 
Harvey by Wyatt, whom he removed in 1641 to make room for Sir 
William Berkeley, a thorough royalist. The popular party in Vir- 
ginia followed these movements closely and identified Baltimore 
with their enemies. When, therefore, the king and parliament were 
at last at war, 1642, they thought the time had come to strike Balti- 
more in Maryland. Although they were not willing to oppose Charles 
in Virginia, they were willing to urge the Puritans of Maryland to 
strike at his friend, the proprietor of that province. Claiborne saw 
in it an opportunity to recover his property, and in 1645 landed on 
Kent's Island and tried to get the inhabitants to join him in an attack 
on the proprietary government. They would not follow him, not 
because there was no discontent in Maryland, but because they did 
not want to take up Claiborne's quarrel. 


This discontent came to the surface in 1644 when Edward Hill, 
member of the popular Virginia party, appeared in Maryland to per- 
suade the Puritans to return to their old homes south of 
the James. They did not heed him, but persuaded him to ?|^^ ^" ''^ 
espouse their cause against the Catholics. They or- ^f^^J 
ganized a Protestant assembly, and elected Hill governor, 
in the absence of Governor Calvert in England. But at this juncture 
Calvert returned, and finding his province in revolt got a body of 
soldiers from his brother royalist, Governor Berkeley, and made 
prisoners of Hill and his assembly. Six months later Governor 
Calvert died. He tried to pass the governorship to a Catholic and 
royalist, but affairs in England were ordered otherwise. 

In England the king's cause was now desperate, and astute Cecilius 
Calvert was looking for means of appeasing Parliament. The vacant 
governorship was just the opportunity ; he gave it to 
William Stone, a Virginia liberal and a Protestant, and p f.^^^, 
began to think of laws for religious liberty. Stone's first Baltimore. 
assembly passed the famous Toleration Act of 1649, pro- 
tecting all who professed faith in Jesus Christ. It was honestly 
meant by the proprietor, but it was needed in order to protect the 
Catholics under a government thoroughly Protestant. Baltimore's 
reversal of policy created disgust among his old English friends, and 
Charles II in exile ordered that he surrender his government because he 
adhered to the Parliamentarians. This was an impotent thrust, and he 
used it as a good argument when his enemies tried to get Parliament to 
seize the province on the ground that it was a nest of Romanism. 

In 165 1 Parliament, now completely under Cromwell, sent com- 
missioners — one of them being the ubiquitous Claiborne — to reduce 
to obedience Virginia, Maryland, Barbados, Antigua, 
and Bermuda. The islands submitted at once, Virginia ^"^^^ °^ 
made no resistance, and in 1652 Maryland also submitted, tants. 
Baltimore's property rights were maintained, but he lost 
the government, though Stone remained in office under the parlia- 
mentary government. He was friendly to the proprietor, and in 
1654 tried to get him recognized as head of the government under 
Parliament. This aroused the resentment of the commissioners, and 
Claiborne appeared with a Virginia army, deposed Stone, appointed 
commissioners in his stead, and disfranchised the Catholics. A new 
assembly was strongly Puritan and toleration was cast to the winds. 

The deposed governor appealed to force, the Catholics and some 
Protestants fighting under him for the proprietor and liberty of con- 
science. He marched against the Puritans in 1655 and 
sustained a complete defeat at Providence. The Vir- Last^^es?. 
ginians now felt that they might reunite Maryland to 
their own colony. They sent a petition to England urging that the 
proprietary government be abolished and that the two colonies be 


made one. Baltimore's wise concessions to Puritans now bore fruit. 
He completely defeated his enemies ; and the government forced a 
settlement which left him in control of Maryland according to his 
charter and placed the Act of Toleration beyond question. With 
this settlement ended Virginia's interference with Maryland affairs 
and her hopes of recovering that province. At this time Baltimore's 
colony contained 8000 inhabitants on both sides of the Chesapeake 
as far north as the mouth of the Susquehanna. 


The best general authorities are : Channing, History of the United States, vol. I 
(1905) ; Osgood, The A merican Colonies in the Seventeenth Century, 3 vols. (1904-1907) ; 
Tyler, England in America (1904); Avery, History of tlie United States and Its 
People, 7 vols. (1905 — ) ; Doyle, English Colonics in America, 5 vols. (1882-1907) ; 
Fiske, Old Virginia and Her Neighbors, 2 vols. (1900) ; and Eggleston, The Beginners 
of a Nation (1897). 

The leading original sources are : Records of the Virginia Company of London, 
2 vols.. Miss Kingsbury, ed. (1906) ; Hakluyt, Principall Navigations, 16 vols. 
(Edinburgh ed., 1885-1890); Narratives of Early Virginia, Tyler, ed. (1907), 
contains the best of Smith with portions of other writers ; Calendar of State Papers, 
Colonial Series, America and West Indies, vol. I (i860); Acts of Privy Council, 
6 vols. (1908-1912); Brown, Genesis of the United States, 2 vols. (1891) ; Hening, 
Statutes at Large of Virginia, 13 vols. (1823); Archives of Maryland, 29 vols. 
(1889 — ); and Macdonald, Select Charters (1899). 

On the settlement on Roanoke Island see : Ashe, History of North Carolina, 
vol. I (1908) ; Hawks, History of North Carolina, vol. I (1857) ; Strachey, Travaile 
into Virginia (Hakluyt Soc, 184S) ; and Edwards, Life of Raleigh (1868). 

Contemporary works on early Virginia are : Captain Smith, True Relation (1608) ; 
lh\d.. General History of Virginia (1624), both in Arber's edition of Smith's Works 
(1884); and minor writers in Narratives of Early Virginia (1907). The best 
histories of Virginia are those of Robert Beverley (1722), WiUiam Stith (1747), 
John D. Burke (1805), and Charles Campbell (1847). Other important works 
are: Brown, First Republic in America (189S) ; Ibid., English Politics in America 
(1901) ; Beer, Origins of the British Colonial System (1908), exxellent for the British 
side of the colonial movement; Bruce, Institutional History of Virginia in the 
Seventeenth Century, 2 vols. (1910) ; Ibid., Economic History of Virginia in the 
Seventeenth Century, 2 vols. (1896) ; Ibid., Social Life of Virginia in the Seventeenth 
Century (1907). 

On Maryland see : Mereness, Maryland, as a Proprietary Province (1901) ; Bozman, 
History of Maryland, 2 vols. (1837); Browne, History of Maryland (1893); Neill 
Founders of Maryland (1876) ; Ibid., Terra Mariae (1867) ; Latane, Early Relations 
of Virginia and Maryland (Johns Hopkins Studies, XIII, 1895) ; Steiner, The 
Beginnings of Maryland (Ibid., XXI, 1903) ; and Narratives of Early Maryland, 
Hall, ed. (1910), contains Alsop's Cliaracter of Maryland, Hammond, Leah and 
Rachael, and other early tracts. An important source is the Fund Publications 
of the Maryland Historical Society, No. 34 of which contains The Calvert Papers. 

For Independent Reading 

Fiske, Old Virginia and Her Neighbors, 2 vols. (1900) ; Eggleston, The Beginners 
of a Nation (1897) ; Browne, George and Cecilius Calvert (1893) ; Bruce, Social 
Life of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century (1907) ; and Ashton, Editor, Adventures 
and Discourses of Captain John Smith (1883), taken from Smith's own writings. 


The Plymouth Colony 

When James I was driving non-conformist ministers from their 
livings, two of the victims, Richard Clifton and John Robinson, were 
received at Scrooby, in Nottinghamshire, by William . 

Brewster, living in a manor house of the brother of Sir thePHerims 
Edwin Sandys. The region is the cradle of religious 
reform ; for not only did the New England Pilgrims origi- 
nate here, but ten miles northeast of Scrooby is Epworth, whence 
issued a century later the founder of the great Wesleyan movement. 
Brewster, a man of stout heart, a retired diplomat, and a strong 
Puritan, gathered his neighbors under his roof to hear the words of 
Clifton and Robinson ; and in 1606 was organized a separatist con- 
gregation, with Robinson for pastor. Self-control, plainness in dress, 
honesty of speech, and absolute faith in the Bible were some of the 
features of its faith. The pastor was a fellow of Cambridge, wise in 
business matters, and capable of ruling others by his sweetness and 
strength of character. An antagonist called him "the most learned, 
polished, and modest spirit that ever separated from the Church of 

The congregation encountered persecutions immediately. The 
members were watched day and night and, as Bradford later wrote, 
"some were taken and clapt up in prison . . . andy® i l d 
most were faine to flie and leave their howses and habi- 
tations, and the means of their livlihood. Yet these and many other 
sharper things which afterwards befell them, were no other than they 
looked for, and therefore were y® better prepared to bear them by 
y® assistance of Gods grace and spirite." Fleeing one by one, the 
members at length arrived in Amsterdam and then went to Leyden, 
where they found employment and set up their church, their pastor 
going with them and sharing their sorrows. At the end of ten years 
their industrial condition was not improved, and their children were 
becoming Dutch in speech and ideas. They longed for a home in an 
English land and applied for a grant in Virginia. February ^. 

2, 1620, a patent issued from the London Company per- 
mitting them to settle a plantation and to govern it by laws of their 
own in keeping with the laws of England. Sandys got his friends to 



urge the king to promise that the settlement should not be molested ; 
but James would only wink at the enterprise. This satisfied the 
Pilgrims, as we may now call them; for they reflected that "a seale 
as broad as the house floor" would not keep James to his promise. 

Not all the congregation could leave Leyden. Some were held back 
by family bonds, others were too old or too young, and others could 
. not sell their property for money. Thus it happened that 
■* ■ the majority remained in Leyden and the pastor stayed 
with them. By request, William Brewster went as leader. Robin- 
son's preaching in Leyden had drawn to his congregation fugitives 
from many parts of England, and the result was that many of the 
emigrants were not of those who fled from Scrooby, and some were 
not members of the congregation. Seventy London merchants ad- 
vanced 7000 pounds to fit out the expedition ; and it was agreed 
that the net earnings should go into a common fund for seven 
years and then be divided among the shareholders. Ten pounds 
was the value of a share and each immigrant was allowed one 
share for services. 

September 6, 1620, after many delays, the Pflgrims, 102 in number, 
set sail from Plymouth for Virginia, as they thought, in a hired ship, 
the Mayflower. November 1 1 they sighted land at Cape 
H,°^M^ °^ Cod. Bearing southward to pass it and come to the 
flower. Delaware river, where they designed to settle, they en- 

countered shoals and drew back, coming to anchor in the 
harbor of Provincetown. The captain of the ship refused to continue 
his journey southward, alleging the dangers of the sea. After five 
weeks of exploration they took the ship to Plymouth, a place marked 
and named on Captain John Smith's map. The place had deep water 
for the ships, a stream of fresh water for drinking, and some cleared 
fields where Indians had once grown corn. December 16 (26, New 
Style) they brought the Mayflower to the place and began to build 
huts for the passengers. 

A hard winter and much suffering now followed. Hunger, cold, 
and illness played their parts relentlessly, and by the arrival of spring 
hardly fifty of the colonists were alive. Of the eighteen 
in/Time°°" ^ives who came in the ship only four survived. The 
seasoning process was as cruel here as in Virginia. But 
the spirit of the survivors did not flag. By hard work they raised a 
small amount of corn in 162 1 and came to the autumn with hopeful- 
ness. But the arrival of thirty-five colonists without food necessitated 
a regime of half-rations. In the spring of 1622 came sixty-five more, 
and the whole settlement was in dire want until the corn ripened. 
During these distressing months the fish and game were abundant, 
but the colonists were agriculturalists and had not learned to take 
them. Here, as in Virginia, it took time to develop the keen resource- 
fulness of the American frontiersman. 


Plymouth, outside the bounds of the London Company, could not 
profit by the original patent. But in 1621 it received a grant from 
the council for New England, which was created by the 
king in 1620 with authority to settle the coast from the eriinien7' 
fortieth to the forty-eighth degree of latitude. The terms 
were not satisfactory, and in 1630 a more valid grant was secured. 
The colonists desired a charter like that of Massachusetts Bay, but 
the gift was denied them. Without a frame of government from the 
crown they were therefore thrown on their own initiative. The re- 
sult was the "Mayflower Compact," signed November 21, 1620, 
by each male adult except the servants and two hired seamen. It 
created "a civil body politic" on democratic lines but fully sub- 
servient to the royal authority. In the absence of a charter it 
was the basis of civil government in Plymouth until the colony 
was united with Massachusetts in 1691. The first governor, John 
Carver, died in 162 1, and his successor, William Bradford, was an- 
nually reelected, until his death in 1657, with the exception of five 
years, when he refused to serve. 

The relations of the colonists to the Indians proved fortunate. 
Pestilence had swept away those in the immediate neighborhood. In 
the spring of 162 1 Samoset, from the island of Monhegan, 
arrived at the town crying "Welcome!" He had lived ^•tl^'j^"^ 
for some time with English traders and proved useful to Indians, 
the colonists. He brought to them Squanto, another 
Indian, who taught the whites to raise Indian corn and to fertilize 
their fields with fish. In 162 1 a treaty was made with Massasoit, 
chief of the Wampanoags, and it resulted in fifty years of peace with 
the Indians south and east of Plymouth. To the west were the Narra- 
gansetts, who sent a war challenge, a bundle of arrows tied in a rattle- 
snake's skin. Bradford promptly returned the skin stuffed with bul- 
lets, and the threatened danger vanished. In 1623 the Indians to the 
northward planned to exterminate the whites whom the adventurer 
Weston had settled at Weymouth. The whites asked Plymouth 
for aid, and Captain Miles Standish, with the fighting men of that 
colony, marched against the savages and taught them to respect the 
white man's arms. After that Plymouth had peaceful relations 
with all the Indians. 

Another difficulty overcome by Bradford's good sense was the 
communal form of labor, adopted for seven years at the instance of 
the merchants who promoted the colony. Lack of in- 
terest marked the system, and the colony seemed on the Common 
verge of destruction when in 1623 Bradford assigned Abandoned, 
a parcel of land to each family for use. The result was 
good, and individual effort returned with the prospect of individual 
gain. The fur trade, well managed, proved profitable, and from the 
proceeds the debt to the company in England was paid off. 


In church government the Pilgrims were thoroughgoing Separa- 
tists. Pastor and elders were elected by the adult males of the con- 
gregation. Religious ceremonies were rigorously es- 
Religious chewed, and for a time even marriages and funerals were 
conducted without religious forms. Attendance at meet- 
ing was compulsory on members and non-members. Theology ruled 
the minds of the people and the orthodox believed they saw on every 
hand revelations of the divine will. In 1623 drought threatened to 
destroy the crop and a day of humiliation and prayer was observed ; 
after which came a copious rain which saved the harvest. In grati- 
tude a Thanksgiving Day was set apart for the autumn. There had 
been, however, a day of thanksgiving in 1621. 

The growth of Plymouth was slow, for the soil was not fertile and 
but Httle remained from the annual product after the food of the colony 
was set aside. There was no staple crop, as tobacco in 
^f^R°m°'^th Virginia, from which a large money return could be ex- 
pected. Immigration was naturally from the Separa- 
tists, who came slowly. Thus it happened that in 1624 the population 
was 180, and in 1626 it was 300. By this time a desire to disperse and 
settle on the better lands to the northward could not be restrained, 
though Bradford did his best. Men abandoned their house lots as 
they went, and Duxbury and Scituate sprang into thriving existence. 
Each had its own civil and ecclesiastical government like that of 
Plymouth ; and for common affairs of each kind there were represen- 
tative assemblies. To be admitted to citizenship in a town or mem- 
bership in a congregation required a vote of the existing citizens or 
members, as the case might be. 

Meanwhile, much attention was given to colonizing other parts of 
New England. The Plymouth Company of 1606 was reorganized 
in the Council for New England, 1620, and received a 
Other New valuable fishing monopoly. Sir Ferdinando Gorges and 
Settlements. Captain John Mason, king's men and churchmen, were 
the most active members. They made large plans which 
they had not the means of executing. In 1623 a settlement was made 
at Rye, in New Hamsphire, only to fail in 1626. In 1627 an attempt 
was made at Dover and another at York, while fishing stations were 
established at Pemaquid Point and on Monhegan Island. Saco and 
Biddeford soon followed. Other small settlements were Cape Anne, 
1623, Hull, 1625, Salem, 1625, "Merry Mount," near Quincy, 1625, 
and Buzzard's Bay, 1627. Most of them were mere fishing stations, 
and none gave evidence of prosperity. The Council of New England 
could offer them little aid. After granting most of what is now New 
Hampshire and Maine to Mason and Gorges and smaller tracts to 
other persons, it asked the king in 1635 to annul its charter, saying, 
"what remains is only a breathless carcass." From this time we hear 
little more of the council. Most of the lands over which it had juris- 


diction had been granted to former members and the council, who now 
held of the king directly. 

The Massachusetts Bay Colony 

The Pilgrims were Separatists, but the Puritans, who founded 
Massachusetts, wished to remain in the established church, although 
they thought to reform its doctrines. They were es- 
pecially earnest against bishops, whom they considered p"ri{an^*^^ 
a relic of popery ; and they resented the wearing of sur- Migration, 
plices. They were very numerous, and Laud, Bishop of 
London and supporter of Charles I in his arbitrary government, 
began to harry the Puritan clergy out of their offices. Thus arose 
the impulse of the Puritan migration to New England, a place where 
prelates would not distress and religion would be preserved in Puritan 
integrity. Yet other motives were present. The New World offered 
wide industrial opportunity, and it seemed to be possible to found a 
government there free from the taint of absolutism which then alarmed 
many Englishmen. The Puritans were generally thrifty and practical 
business men and liberals in their political ideas. Among them, also, 
were many thoughtful and well-educated men who could give reasons 
for the doctrines they held. Of this class was John Winthrop, a 
well-to-do landowner, a former student but not a graduate of Cam- 
bridge, a lawyer, and a wise man of affairs. He would have been a 
leader of any community in which he lived. 

In 1628, before the Puritan migration was planned, six Englishmen, 
among them John Endicott, secured from the Council of New England 
a grant of land bounded on the north by the headwaters of the Merri- 
mac and on the south by the source of the Charles and stretching 
westward to the Pacific. They were authorized to es- 
tablish fisheries, trading stations, and agricultural settle- ^^g^^ts 
ments, and were named the Massachusetts Bay Company, g^y Charter. 
In 1629 the king confirmed the grant and gave the grantees 
civil jurisdiction within the limits of the grant. Endicott with about 
forty others arrived at Naumkeag in September, 1628, to plant the 
first town. He found there the remnant of the Cape Anne settlement 
and the two parties settled together amicably, changing the name of 
the place to Salem. Endicott and his associates were Puritans, but 
up to this time their enterprise had no religious significance. In 1629, 
however, the number of associates was enlarged, and among the new 
members was Winthrop. The struggle between parliament and crown 
was already begun, and many on the former side felt that tyranny 
would certainly triumph and were willing to escape betimes from its 
grasp. In August, 1629, twelve leaders of this group made the Cam- 
bridge Agreement, pledging themselves to emigrate to Massachusetts 
if the company would transfer the government entirely to the settlers. 


The company accepted the proposal, and the transfer made, John 
Winthrop was elected governor by those who proposed to go with 
him. June 12, 1630, he arrived at Salem with eleven 
e c arter g^pg ^j^^ g^^ settlers. Here, he found, was much dis- 
couragement and some suffering, and he decided to make 
his chief settlement elsewhere. He selected a site at the mouth of the 
Charles and called the place Boston. But it was too small for such a 
large number of settlers, and the colonists dividing into 
S°ttl°d bands settled seven other towns from Salem to Dorchester. 

They did not escape sickness and hunger, and by the 
end of the first winter 200 had died. But the governor strove hard 
to provide food and was able to bring the colony through the winter 
without serious discouragement. After that the growth was rapid, 
and in 1643 the total population was over 16,000. But the outbreak 
of war between parliament and king made it necessary for every 
Puritan to remain in England, and from that time the migration to New 
England was slow. 

Soon after the colony was settled there arose serious difficulty in 
regard to its government. The charter intrusted authority to the 
governor, the assistants of whom there were to be not more 
AConstitu- than eighteen, and the freemen, but it did not define 
tem^Evolved. ^^^ power of each. The same difficulty appeared in other 
colonies, and in them, as in Massachusetts, it had to be 
worked out gradually into a practical solution. Trouble arose when 
Winthrop, a man of strong personality, began to act in important 
affairs on his own initiative. He lent powder to Plymouth, established 
trading stations, and erected fortifications at Boston. Finally, acting 
with the assistants, he levied a tax to pay for fortifications at New- 
town. Watertown refused to pay, claiming that only the freemen 
might lay a tax. Here was defiance in the infant state, and Winthrop 
was not the man to tolerate it. The townsmen were called before 
him and withdrew their protest. But their cause was good and their 
action led to reform. Next year, 1632, the general court, the as- 
sembly of all the freemen, enacted that each town should elect two 
delegates to advise with the governor about taxation. This hardly 
restrained the stout will of the governor, and in 1634 three delegates 
appeared at the general court from each of the eight towns and se- 
cured the adoption by that body of a fundamental reform. Hence- 
forth, of the four courts held each year according to the charter, one, 
attended by all the freemen, was to elect governor, deputy governor, 
and assistants, and the others, composed of delegates from each town, 
was to make laws, grant land, and transact other important public 
business. At first both assistants and delegates sat together, but this 
was changed in 1644, when a bicameral system was adopted and the 
assistants became in reality an upper house. Winthrop and many 
others regretted these changes, for they believed government should 


rest with the upper class. But the popular party was strong and did 
not cease its efforts until in 1644 it defeated Winthrop's reelection. 
But in 1646 he was again successful, and retained the governorship 
until he died in 1649. ^^ shall not understand Massachusetts his- 
tory if we do not remember that the colony was long ruled by the ideal 
of an aristocracy of virtue. 

To insure the supremacy of the virtuous it was enacted in 163 1 that 
none but members of a church should be freemen. By this means 
the individual congregations, under the influence of their 
ministers, regulated the suffrage. Joining the church chise."^^"' 
thus became the means of enfranchisement. Although 
this practice must have secured the disfranchisement of the most 
worthless characters, it also excluded those who for conscience sake 
would not join a church, and those who held other than the Puritan 
faith. But such people were not desired in the colony. The settle- 
ment was planned as a Puritan commonwealth, and if non-Puritans 
came they might remain as long as they were quiet, but without the 
suffrage. If they sought to spread another faith, they must be sent 
away. A word must be said for the men who made such laws. The 
fathers of many of them remembered the days when "Bloody Mary" 
burned Protestants at Smithfield, and the religious wars of France 
were only recently extinguished, while a similar struggle in Germany 
was then in its worst stage of horror. Believing in the doctrines for 
which so many lives had been surrendered, they felt justified in safe- 
guarding it in the New World. Massachusetts was not established as 
a home for toleration, but as a well-defended fortress of the Puritan 

There was frequent necessity for enforcing imiformity in the early 
years of the colony. European Protestantism at the time was beset 
with schism, and it was natural for the same symptoms to 
appear in America. They were repressed sternly, and the ^"^^"^ ^i 
victims went back to England with loud complaints of j^g views, 
intolerance. But one of the dissenting ones would not 
return. Roger Williams, destined to found Rhode Island as a genuine 
home of tolerance, was a protege of Sir Edward Coke, the famous 
jurist. He had a brilliant career at Cambridge, but refused to take 
orders because he would not support the Establishment. In 163 1 
he became minister at Salem, then preached at Plymouth, and at 
length returned to Salem. He preached the separation of church and 
state, declared that an oath was only to be enforced morally, and said 
that it was a sin to worship according to the foniis of the established 
church. His rigid literalness led him to assert that the soil belonged 
to the Indians, from whom alone the whites could acquire title. 

All this would have aroused the authorities at any time, but in 
1635 it occasioned especial alarm. Excluded schismatics return- 
ing to England had pronounced the colony a nest of separatism, 


and the Privy Council had in 1634 stopped ten ships about to sail 
until their passengers agreed to conform with the Prayer Book. 

Meanwhile, a commission headed by Laud was appointed 
^^A ^°c°°^ to supervise the colonies in America. The general court 
picion. of Massachusetts, much alarmed, took steps to fortify the 

harbors, but in a short time the tide turned. Good di- 
plomacy had thrust the danger aside, but no one knew when it would 
return. It was not a time for preaching such radicalism as Williams's 
in the colony. The Puritans, claiming that they held the true Eng- 
lish faith, were accustomed at this time to assert rather stoutly their 
accord with the English Church, although, as a matter of fact, they 
had no bishop and paid not the slightest attention to the British 

Williams's views inevitably elicited a response, and one of those 
polemic conflicts ensued for which the age was noted. The defender 

of orthodoxy was John Cotton, of Boston, and under his 
Roger Wil- proddings Williams took a still more radical position, 
ished. -^^ began to criticize other ministers ; he advised his own 

flock not to affiliate with other churches, and when some 
of them ignored him he excommunicated them. This was too much, 
even for Salem, and it turned against the minister, who felt impelled 
to resign. He was now summoned before the general court, and re- 
fusing to recant he was ordered into exile in October, 1635. As 
winter was approaching, he was permitted to remain until spring on 
condition that he did not preach his tenets. He seems to have made 
no promise in the matter, but when it was known in January that he 
was instructing a group of twenty persons, perparations were made 
to send him to England. Learning of this he escaped across the snows 
to the Narragansett Indians, who received him kindly. Here, outside 
of Massachusetts, he planted the settlement of Providence. He was 
followed by a small number of friends. 

A more important division was occasioned by Mrs. Anne Hutch- 
inson. Of the best social rank in Boston, she had her following 

among the influential class. She was distinguished for 
Hutchinson ii^ental acumen and piety and showed much ability in 

discussion. Her first achievement was to gather a num- 
ber of women to whom she explained sermons. From that she ad- 
vanced to the teaching of her own doctrines, and soon she had a large 
following, among whom were many men of importance. Then the 
orthodox became alarmed and began to warn the faithful against 
what they declared were her errors. Attack and counter-attack led 
to recrimination and intrigues, in which religion and politics were 
intermingled. At length a council of ministers assembled but did not 
openly condemn her doctrines. In 1635 young Sir Harry Vane 
arrived in Boston and became an adherent of her faith. He was ex- 
ceedingly popular, and in 1636 was elected governor. Thus strength- 


ened, Mrs. Hutchinson's party had probably a majority in Boston, 
but in the other towns the orthodox side was stronger. In 1637, when 
the echoes of the controversy reached all parts of the colony, a synod 
of ministers convened and laid down eighty-nine points of orthodoxy, 
all in repudiation of the teachings of Mrs. Hutchinson, which were 
clearly Antinomian. Against an utterance by the ministers the poli- 
ticians dared not act, and now the weaker of the new sect began to de- 
sert it, among them Rev. John Cotton, of Boston, who had once been 
friendly to the new ideas. In the same year Governor Vane was de- 
feated for reelection by Winthrop, who took a conservative attitude 
in the dispute, and a short time afterwards the rejected candidate 
left Boston for England. In November, 1637, the situation came 
before the general court, which decided that only one form of 
religion should exist in the colony, and declared that the newer 
should go. 

The affair ended with a trial which seems to moderns a judicial 
horror ; but it was held in conformity with the usage of the English 
parliament when it sat to investigate a great and danger- ^^ . , , t^, 
ous matter of state. Mrs. Hutchinson was summoned Hutchinson' 
before the court to explain her doctrines. Had she been 
cautious she might have baffled her opponents; but having a sharp 
tongue she compromised herself by her replies. Being asked, "How 
do you know that it is God that did reveal these things to you and not 
Satan?" she replied, "How did Abraham know that it was God that 
bid him offer his son?" "By an immediate voice," said one of the 
court. "So to me by an immediate revelation," was the rejoinder. 
This was enough. The Puritan held the words of the Bible for the 
highest authority and had no tolerance for those who claimed special 
revelations. Winthrop, presiding over the court, put the question : 
Shall Mrs. Hutchinson be banished from Massachusetts ? and only 
two votes were in the negative. When she asked why she was banished, 
the governor replied : " Say no more. The court knows wherefore and 
is satisfied." Her leading followers were fined or disfranchised. In 
the following spring she was brought before her own church to be dealt 
with as a church member. Broken in spirit by imprisonment and 
isolation, she recanted the most extreme of her doctrines, saying they 
arose from "the height and pride of her spirit." But this availed 
nothing. Several of the most pious ministers present denounced 
her as a liar and she was formally excommunicated. With her family 
she went southward to Narragansett Bay, and when, four years later, 
she and her family were massacred by the Indians the saints of Massa- 
chusetts took it as a judgment from heaven. 

The next important protest against dogmatic uniformity in Massa- 
chusetts came from the Quakers, and it was sternly repressed. The 
death of Winthrop in 1649 and Rev. John Cotton in 1652 left Endi- 
cott, a narrower-minded man, in control. In 1656 came to Boston 


two Quakers, women, who felt it their duty to "bear witness" in 
that town. They were sent away, but eight others immediately ap- 
peared only to be driven back, also. This caused much anxiety 

among the ruling class, who considered Quakerism espe- 
V^^. ■ cially dangerous. Accordingly, letters were sent to the 
Boston. ' other New England colonies urging that laws be passed 

for the exclusion of the pestiferous heresy. Connecticut, 
New Haven, and Plymouth gave favorable replies, and laws were passed 
to keep the new sect out of their bounds. Massachusetts passed similar 
acts, but as they were continuously violated she finally enacted that 
if any banished Quakers returned to the colony they should suffer 
death. Immediately William Robinson, Marmaduke Stevenson, 
and Mrs. Dyer, wife of the secretary of Rhode Island, appeared in 
Boston. They were ordered to depart, but at once came back and 
were sentenced to be hanged. The two men were executed, 1659 ; 
but Mrs. Dyer was reprieved at the last moment when her son offered 
to take her to her home. In 1660 she returned and suffered martyr- 
dom. Other colonies forbade the Quakers to preach, as Virginia and 
New Netherland, but it was only Massachusetts that put them to 
death. In striking contrast was the course of Rhode Island, which 
made no restriction on liberty of speech. 

The Settlement of Other New England Colonies 

Four settlements, at Providence, Portsmouth, Newport, and War- 
wick, each made by religious refugees from Massachusetts, make up 

the early colony of Rhode Island. The first was es- 
?^°^H tablished by Roger Williams and a small group of fol- 

Founded. lowers in 1636 on lands granted by the Indians. The 

second was made by Mrs. Hutchinson and her fol- 
lowers in 1638, the third by a portion of her followers who left Ports- 
mouth in 1639 and settled along the shore of the excellent harbor of 
Newport, and the fourth was planted in 1638 by Samuel Gorton, an 
insurgent from Massachusetts who could not stand the turbulent 
regime of Providence. There was much discussion among the settlers, 
as was to be expected from men whose very existence was religious 
dissent ; but out of it came a spirit of democracy which left a lasting 
impress on the settlements. They began without charters and had 
no other form of government than what they established by their 
own agreement. In 1643 Roger Williams, on a visit to England, got 
an act of incorporation under the government of the Long Parliament, 
confirming to the people of the four settlements their lands with the 
right to govern themselves in their own way. Under this act a 
common system was organized, and it remained the authority for 
Rhode Island and Providence until in 1663 a more regular charter 
was issued by the king. 


Meanwhile, the lands south of Massachusetts and west of Rhode 
Island had attracted settlers. On the Connecticut, Dutch trading 
forts had already been planted where Hartford and 
Wethersfield later stood, and one object of the English jq^^'^^ 
was probably to save this rich valley from the control Connecticut 
of New Amsterdam. The migration was begun in 1636 
when Rev. Thomas Hooker and a large part of his congregation at 
Cambridge sold their lands and moved in a body to the upper Con- 
necticut valley. Other groups from Dorchester, Watertown, and 
Roxbury soon followed, those from the last-named town settling at 
Springfield, which proved to be within the bounds of Massachusetts. 
Out of this movement sprang English settlements at Hartford, Wind- 
sor, and Wethersfield, and later at other places in Connecticut. The 
newcomers did not drive out the Dutch, but in many ways made life 
uncomfortable for them. The river towns of Connecticut in 1639 
adopted a written form of government with a governor, assistants, 
and a law-making general court composed of deputies from the towns. 
The suffrage was to be regulated by the towns. This, it will be seen, 
was but a copy of the Massachusetts system. 

The upper river towns were not planted before still another enter- 
prise was launched at the mouth of the Connecticut. In this region 
the Earl of Warwick held a large tract of land from the Council of 
New England. In 1631 he transferred it to Lord Saye and Sele, 
Lord Brooke, and others, who sent out a colony under John Winthrop, 
Jr. At the mouth of the river it settled the town of Saybrook, and its 
territory was known as the colony of Connecticut. For many years 
it languished through lack of funds. 

A third enterprise was the colony of New Haven, planted in 1638 
by Theophilus Eaton and Rev. John Davenport. It was a strong 
band of immigrants, and they came with great hopes of 
making their port the commercial metropolis of the region. Established. 
But various disasters intervened, and for a time prosperity 
came slowly. In 1646 they built a ship and sent her away with a 
cargo worth 5000 pounds, but nothing further was heard of her. Tradi- 
tion says that once afterwards she appeared as a phantom ship and 
suddenly disappeared as she seemed about to enter the harbor. 

The settlement was founded without charter or land grant, and the 
inhabitants proceeded to constitution -making of their own will. Tak- 
ing the Bible as guide and law book they transformed the 
congregation into a body politic to rule in civil as in eccle- ^^ ^^^ 
siastical affairs. Thus none but church members should grmnent. 
vote, and a committee of seven members was provided with 
authority to determine who should be admitted to church member" 
ship and consequently to the franchise. This oligarchical govern- 
ment remained in force until in 1662 New Haven was merged into 
the Connecticut Colony, when that enterprise got a charter from 


Charles II. But we must not forget that narrow as the basis of gov- 
ernment was in New Haven, as in other New England colonies, it 
was an honest and beneficent government in most of the affairs of 
life. Its sole severity was in requiring a rigid observance of Puritan 
practices, and to most of the inhabitants this was not a hardship. 

The advance of the whites along the coast alarmed the Pequot 
Indians, who lived in the central part of the present state of Con- 
necticut. The origin of the trouble does not clearly ap- 
The equot ^^^^^ |^^^ ^j^g settlers were convinced that the times 
demanded a most signal chastisement. Massachusetts 
lent a hand, and in 1637 a combined force of whites from Massa- 
chusetts and Connecticut, with 280 Indian allies, ancient foes of the 
Pequots, surprised the enemy in a fort near the Rhode Island bound- 
ary line and of the 400 men, women, and children within it not more 
than five escaped alive. The Pequots were then pursued vigorously. 
Overtaken in a swamp near New Haven, another great slaughter 
occurred, and the result of the two engagements was the complete ex- 
tinction of the Pequot tribe as such. It was grim dealing, but it gave 
the whites peace from the Indians for many years. 

Meanwhile the coasts of New Hampshire and Maine had been 
dotted with fishing and trading villages which gradually grew into 
agricultural towns. In some cases they received fugitives 
New Hamp- fj-Qj^ |-]^g religious persecutions in Massachusetts. These 
Maine. settlements were usually made under the protection of 

Sir Ferdinando Gorges and Captain John Mason, who 
held grants for nearly the whole region, although some were direct 
from the Council of New England. In 1635 Mason obtained con- 
firmation of a grant for the region between Salem and the Piscataqua 
as his own property, and called it New Hampshire. The region be- 
tween the Piscataqua and the Kennebec was confirmed to Gorges and 
called Maine. Massachusetts had a claim to most of the former, 
for her charter fixed her north boundary at an east and west line 
running three miles north of the source of the Merrimac. She did 
not act violently, but when Mason died (1635) and his heirs left the 
New Hampshire towns to shift for themselves, she absorbed them one 
by one, giving protection in exchange for allegiance. In 1647 Gorges 
died and Maine was left without a head. The towns tried for a while 
to maintain a general government of their own, but they were very 
weak, and much disorder appeared. Now Massachusetts realized 
that her hour was come. Assuming the aggressive, in 1652 she ran 
her northern, boundary in keeping with her own claim, and extending 
the line eastward to the ocean, secured the coast towns as far north as 
Saco Bay. The weak settlements to the north of the line remained 
independent for six years, when they also submitted to Massachusetts. 
In all these towns the government was organized on the regular New 
England plan ; but not all of them were of the congregational faith. 


The Pequot war seems to have been the first occasion of a desire 
for union among the Puritan colonies. Connecticut made such a 
suggestion in 1637, but Massachusetts raised the question 
of boundaries, and it was impossible to find a satisfactory ^^ ^^^~ 
basis of cooperation. In a year or two alarm was felt lest federation, 
the Dutch seize the Connecticut settlements, and the sug- 
gestion was repeated, but with the same results. In 1642 Connecticut 
renewed the request, alleging a general Indian league to crush the 
whites. Then Massachusetts began to relent, and in 1643 the de- 
sired league was fomied without reference to boundaries. To it were 
admitted the colonies of Massachusetts, Plymouth, Connecticut, and 
New Haven. New Hampshire and Maine were not taken in because 
they were unlike the leagued colonies "in their ministry and admin- 
istration," and Rhode Island was left out because the inhabitants 
were "tumultuous" and "schismatic." 

The Constitution of the Confederacy provided for a firm and per- 
manent offensive and defensive league, the management of which was 
placed m the hands of two commissioners from each of 
the four colonies. These commissioners by a majority sutution. 
vote of six were to settle questions of war or peace, quotas 
of men and arms, contributions for the general fund, and division of 
the spoils gained in war. Contributions were to be paid by the in- 
dividual colonies in proportion to population, and the confederacy 
was not to interfere in the local affairs of a colony. 

The confederation was in operation for forty years. It did not 
remove all the causes of conflict between the colonies, but it lessened 
them. It stood the test of the terrible war with King Philip, and only 
fell to pieces when the early dangers it was formed to meet were passed. 
Although phrases in the constitution seem to indicate that the framers 
hoped to build up a permanent federal state, the confederacy was, in 
fact, only a league for self-protection. Between the large colony of 
Massachusetts and her small neighbors there was too much latent 
jealousy for permanent cooperation. The latter were vigilant lest 
they lose some of their power, and the requirement that six of the eight 
commissioners should assent to business was an expression of this 
feeling. On the other hand, Massachusetts resented the checks the 
constitution put upon her. She declared that she was forced to as- 
sume a disproportionate part of the common burden. In 1653 the 
commissioners decided to raise troops for an expected war against the 
Dutch, and apportioned the levies of troops so that Massachusetts 
should furnish two-thirds of them. The Bay Colony did not relish 
fighting a war to protect the people of Connecticut, and persuaded 
itself that the war was not necessary. The requisition was accordingly 
ignored in words which strongly remind us of the language in which 
South Carolina justified nullification many years later. There were 
cases of friction which made it clear that it was futile to expect the one 
strong government to yield itself to the direction of three weak ones. 


New York under the Dutch 

The history of New Amsterdam, as the Dutch called New York, 
begins with the exploration of Henry Hudson, an Englishman in Dutch 
employ, in 1609. In the Half Moon, a "fly-boat " manned 
H^d^^ by eighteen or twenty men, he skirted the coast from 

Newfoundland to Virginia, searching for a northwest 
passage. He entered Delaware Bay, but turned back when he ob- 
served shoals. Northward 125 miles he came to a broad harbor which 
he entered safely. The water was very salt, and he thought it might 
indicate the long-sought passage to other seas. Following its course 
he sailed onward, past beautiful hills and rich plains, until at last he 
was halted by shallows at what is now Albany. From that point a 
small boat proceeded eight leagues, but only proved that no open sea 
lay beyond. 

This exploration revealed to the Dutch the value of the Hudson 
river. With an excellent harbor at its mouth and long water com- 
munication to the interior of the country, it was apparent 
Bf"k^^ that it possessed great advantages in the Indian trade. 
From 1 610 their traders began to frequent the river, 
among them Adriaen Block, a man of much enterprise. In 1613 his 
ship was burned, but he built another in which he began to explore 
the New England waters. He visited Long Island Sound, the Con- 
necticut river. Block Island, which bears his name, and the coast as 
far as Nahant. For his services he received for three years the mo- 
nopoly of the fur trade betweer parallels 40° and 45° north latitude. 
For trading purposes Manhattan Island was of supreme importance, 
and by 1620 it was the center of a fair trade. 

In 162 1 the government of Holland established the Dutch West 
India Company, a trading enterprise, and authorized it to spoil the 
Spaniards and to settle colonies in Africa and the New 
N^T World. It had no special reference to the Hudson river 

Settled. region, but that section naturally attracted attention, and 

in 1623 a small settlement was made on Manhattan Is- 
land. The enterprise was confided by the company to Peter Minuit 
(pronounced Minnewit), the governor, who with five councillors was 
the sole governing body. They were supplemented, however, by a 
schout'fiscal, who arrested and prosecuted delinquents, and a secretary 
who represented the company's financial interests, and between these 
and the governor and council much friction occurred. All these 
officers were appointed by the company, and popular suffrage was 
not granted. The settlement was called New Netherland, and the 
town on Manhattan Island was New Amsterdam. The boundaries of 
the province were indefinite. Soon after his arrival Peter Minuit 
purchased Manhattan Island from the Indians for goods worth $24, 


and began to erect a fort with a mill and large houses for the com- 
pany's business. 

New Amsterdam grew slowly, for its chief business was the fur 
trade, and agriculturalists were not attracted. In 1629 the company 
tried to promote the settlement of the interior by adopting 
a system of large landed estates. It was provided that system.'^°°'^ 
any member of the company who in four years should carry 
to the colony fifty families at his own expense should have a large 
tract of land over which he should have extensive civil and criminal 
authority under the title of Patroon. He should also have on his 
estate the monopoly of weaving and some exclusive trading privileges. 
It was thus definitely proposed to establish a feudal system of land- 
holding like that of Holland. To encourage the patroons the com- 
pany agreed to furnish them with as many negroes slaves as were 
desired. Under this system the valuable lands around New Amster- 
dam and on the Hudson were quickly absorbed by the most influential 
members of the company. 

Peter Minuit's administration ended in 1632, and he was succeeded 
by Woutervan Twiller, who had married a niece of the great patroon, 
Kiliaen van Rensselaer. He received much opposition 
within the colony, and his peace was also disturbed by the Confusion 
encroachments of the New England men in Connecticut ^wUier and 
and the threats of Virginians who resented the presence Kieft. 
of the Dutch in the Delaware. He was glad to retire 
from his unhappy position, and regarded with complacency the 
troubles of William Kieft, his successor, who arrived in 1638. Under 
him occurred a war with the Indians, who fought to save their hunt- 
ing ground from the advance of the whites. The easy-going Dutch 
were slow to fight, and only Kieft's insistence brought the council to a 
declaration of war. In battle the settlers were not efficient, and at 
last Kieft called in Captain John Underbill, a soldier of fortune from 
New England, who took prominent part against the Pequots. He 
collected 150 soldiers, surprised and destroyed an Indian village at 
Strickland's Plains, and of the 500 inhabitants only eight j^jj^^-^^ 
are said to have escaped. In this war the settlers built a 
wall across the lower end of Manhattan Island to protect their fields 
and houses. Its memory is perpetuated in the name of Wall Street. 
In 1646 peace was made with the savages, but already the colony 
was in dire distress. The inhabitants of New Amsterdam were about 
400, and among them a visitor heard eighteen languages. They were 
discontented, and assailed Kieft bitterly. As sole ruler with the Coun- 
cil he was held responsible for all the evils that came, and the truth is, 
he was not a man to exercise despotism benevolently. In 1647 he 
was succeeded by Peter Stuyvesant. 

The new governor began by declaring that he would rule as a father 
over his children. He promulgated many ordinances against intern- 


perance, but they were not enforced, and it was charged that he 
himself received money to wink at their infraction. He required the 
Indian traders to have licenses from the governor, which 
2^^^^°^ t proved an advantage to his private purse. But he dared not 
of his own power levy taxes, and out of this feeling came a 
step in constitutional development. He asked the people to elect 
eighteen men from whom he and the Council selected nine to advise 
with them in the government, their successors to be chosen by them- 
selves and the governor and council. Thus was created the Nine 
Men, destined to be a thorn in his side. But the desire for self-govern- 
ment was not satisfied, and at length a leader of the liberals appeared 
in Adrian van der Donck, president of the Nine. In 1649 he went to 
Holland with a petition, asking the government to take the colony 
out of the hands of the Company and give it just laws. He also carried 
a severe arraignment of Stuyvesant, whose irritable tem- 
Demandfor pgj. ^j^^^ covetousness gave ample grounds of complaint. 
Government. ^^ ^^5^ his efforts succeeded so far that municipal privi- 
leges were granted to New Amsterdam, but the governor 
was allowed to appoint the officials. His despotism was nowise 
lessened by the creation of this body of subordinates. The next year 
an attack by the English seemed imminent, and Stuyvesant per- 
mitted delegates from the towns and villages to meet to provide means 
of defense. But the assembly took up the state of the colony instead, 
and sent a memorial to the governor, severely arraigning the existing 
system. An exchange of arguments followed, in which the governor's 
aversion to popular government was made very plain, and the result 
of the agitation was nothing. The existing despotism continued until 
the end of Dutch control, 1664. 

Religious bigotry was added to the stout old governor's love of 
power. He hated the Lutherans, Independents, and Baptists, and 
issued a proclamation that no public religious meetings 
Religious should be held except those in accordance with the Dutch 
tions. Reform Church. The ordinance was often evaded, and 

there were some notable cases in which its violation was 
severely punished. The worst was that of Robert Hodshone, a 
Quaker, who, for preaching at Hemstead, Long Island, was sentenced 
by the governor to two years of hard labor. When he refused to work 
he was beaten on three successive days until he fell to his feet. Then 
taken before the governor he would speak when told to hold his tongue, 
for which he was hung up by his hands and beaten until his back was 
raw. This also was repeated until the popular mind sickened of it. 
At last the governor's sister interceded, and Hodshone was allowed 
to go out of the province. Spite of such severities the dissenting 
churches in New Netherland grew stronger. 

From conflicts with the settlements around New Amsterdam the 
efforts of Stuyvesant were drawn to the protection of his boundaries 


north and east. The Delaware Bay, as well as the Connecticut 
river, were both within the charter limits of New Netherland, though 
neither was settled by an agricultural colony. To the 
former came in 1638 fifty Swedish settlers under Peter V^^ .. . 
Minuit, formerly governor of New Amsterdam, planting settlements, 
near the site of Wilmington the town of Christina. 
At that time Sweden was a leading factor in the Thirty Years' 
War, and her colony was not disturbed. But the war ended in 1648, 
and the Dutch within a few years made plans to seize the intrud- 
ing settlements. In 1655 Governor Stuyvesant went against them 
with a largely superior force and easily compelled their submission. 
Sweden was in no position to retake what was lost, and the incipient 
colonial establishment came to an end. 

With the English on the Connecticut Stuyvesant had less success. 
The Dutch trading fort at Hartford, Fort Good Hope, was completely 
isolated by planting the English settlements on the 
river; but it remained undisturbed, flying the Dutch ciuded^rom 
flag and taking what share it could of the Indian trade Connecticut, 
until 1654. In that year, war between Holland and 
England being in progress, the colonists seized Fort Good Hope, 
and with that Dutch possessions in New England passed out of exist- 
ence. Governor Stuyvesant's patriotism suffered a severe shock 
in this calamity. For several years the English settlements had been 
moving westward along the shores of Long Island Sound as far as 
Greenwich and throughout the eastern half of Long Island, — addi- 
tional evidence of the humiliation of Dutch power. Into ^j^^ English 
the New Netherland settlements themselves English- on Long 
men penetrated and became a large part of the element island, 
in opposition to Stuyvesant's despotic rule. 

The situation in the colony invited an attempt at conquest by the 
English, and the Connecticut colonies were anxious to have it made 
by the New England Confederacy ; but Massachusetts 
held back. Then appeal was made to England, and in 1654 f "g^g^i^g ° 
the government was induced to undertake an expedition, jjg^ 
but peace with Holland was made before it could arrive. Netherland. 
Now followed ten years of quiet, during which New 
Netherland continued to offend against the British navigation 
laws. The English had never given up their claim to the whole 
coast and the Dutch colony was within the formal bounds of both 
New England and Virginia. Why should it continue to defy British 
power? The answer came in 1664 when the king, Charles II, 
granted it to his brother, the Duke of York, together with jurisdic- 
tion over New England itself. 

The Duke acted vigorously. Colonel Richard NicoUs was appointed 
his deputy-governor, and August 18, 1664, arrived before New Amster- 
dam with three vessels of war and an adequate body of soldiers. He 


was joined by men from Connecticut, and word came that Massa- 
chusetts would also send aid. At the same time the Englishmen on 
Long Island were arming, and throughout the Dutch villages them- 
selves was apparent a determination to help the English in wiping 
out the rule of the Dutch West India Company. Stuyvesant was in 
a rage. He ordered all the citizens to work on the fortifications, 
and was determined to fight to the last. But the burgomasters 
of the town realized the impossibility of defense, and when Nicolls 
by letter offered the Dutch all the liberties of Englishmen, with inter- 
course with Holland, they asked to see the letter. Stuyvesant tore 
it into bits and said he would rather "be carried out dead " than yield 
to the men around him. He ordered the guns of the fort to open 
fire, but he was led away from the ramparts before they could be 
discharged, and August 29 the town was surrendered. A short 
time later the forts on the Delaware capitulated, and the English 
flag floated from Florida to Maine. 

Early Relations of the Colonies with England 

By an old principle of English law all land in the kingdom not 
otherwise granted belonged to the crown. Under it the king created 

fiefs at will and gave the grantees authority to establish 
'T^® . local governments. When the American continent was 

defend on added to the English domain it fell under this rule. Its 
the King. lands became king's lands, and were subject to his disposal. 

It was, therefore, the crown and not parliament which 
created the American colonies and gave them their forms of govern- 
ment. Having created the colonies, the crown, acting through 
the Privy Council, provided the rules under which they continued to 
exist, and supervised them in such ways as were compatible with the 
charters. Matters of trade, however, were ever near to the British 
heart and were jealously maintained by parliament, so that in regard 
to colonial trade parliament was supreme. In most other things 
the colonies must look to the crown. 

The king contributed little to the support of the colonies. Virginia 
was planted by a company of private individuals, actuated partly 

by philanthropic and partly by commercial purposes. 
Little Aid^^^ Maryland was the enterprise of the Calverts, who wished 

to found a home for Catholics and incidentally to establish 
a great and permanent landed estate. New England was settled 
by groups of Puritans who wished to have happy and prosperous 
homes in which they might worship in their own faith. To each 
enterprise the king gave his sanction and his blessing, but nothing 
more. American colonization in its earliest days was not an enter- 
prise of the crown. 

When the colonies were safely established and it was seen that 


another England was growing up beyond the sea, the king began 
to take a larger interest in them. Virginia fell into his hands when 
the charter was annulled in 1624, not so much because 
James I had a definite desire to direct the colony as Colonies to 
because he hated the liberal government established by under^oyal 
the company. His successor, Charles I, came to see that Oversight, 
some kind of colonial supervision ought to be provided, 
and appointed a commission, with Laud at its head, to make laws 
for all the colonies, regulate their religion, appoint their judges, and 
remove their governors when advisable. In the turbulent times 
then existing the commission did nothing. In 1643 the Long 
Parliament took up the subject and appointed the Earl of Warwick 
governor over all the colonies. He was to be assisted inoperative 
by seventeen commissioners with wide governing powers. Commis- 
Much occupied with other things Warwick seems sions. 
to have done little in regard to colonial affairs, which after the 
restoration were placed in the hands of a Council for Foreign Planta- 
tions, an advisory body reporting to the Privy Council. It showed 
little capacity, and in 1675 was superseded by a standing committee 
of the council, known as the Lords of Trade, which proved far more 
industrious. Most of the colonies, it must be remembered, existed 
under charters, which might be forfeited if certain conditions 
were violated. It was the duty of Lords of Trade to 
inform themselves of colonial affairs and report to the ^^ xrade ^ 
king a violation of a charter. Over a royal colony the 
Lords had a larger jurisdiction. They prepared, or saw, the instruc- 
tions to a royal governor, passed on the laws of an assembly in a 
royal province, advised the king whether or not such laws should be 
allowed, and had a large influence in the appointment of officials. 
Over the colonies generally they had a broad supervision, informing 
themselves about the conditions of trade, making suggestions for the 
better execution of the navigation acts, interfering in disputes between 
colonies, and, in short, seeking to evolve a system of colonial adminis- 
tration which should embody the best results for both the colonies 
and the British nation. In 1696 the Lords of Trade were reorganized 
into the Commissioners of Trade and Plantations, a board independ- 
ent of the Privy Council. As the English cabinet developed, the 
functions of commissioners decreased. Finally in 1768 a colonial 
secretary of state became the head of colonial affairs. 

The Puritan revolution in England, by overthrowing Laud's 
power, probably saved the colonies from an attempt to ^j^^ 
bring them under an active dependence on the crown, colonies 
It left New England undisturbed, and dealt gently with and the 
Virginia, where Charles II had been proclaimed king, and Puritan ^ 
with Maryland, whose Catholic proprietor was after a ®^°" °°* 
while confirmed in his rights. The parliamentary party, in fact, 


was too busy with its troubles in England to interfere with government 
in the colonies. But it adopted the navigation ordinances of 1651, 
which had, if enforced, a decided influence on their commerce. 

In a struggle against a king who laid taxes arbitrarily the English 
merchants took a leading part, and they had a corresponding influence 

in the revolutionary government. It was to please them 
Navigation |.]^g^^ parliament undertook to make the colonial trade 
of 1651. inure to the benefit of English traders. Sporadic laws 

of the same import had existed for years; but the recent 
wide growth of the colonies gave them a new significance, and a new 
law was made. It provided: (i) that no goods produced in Asia, 
Africa, or America, including the colonies, should be brought into any 
British port in any but English owned and manned ships; (2) that 
no European goods should be taken to England or the British posses- 
sions in any but English ships or in the ships of the country in which 
the goods were produced ; (3) the coasting trade in British dominions 
should be limited to British ships; and (4) no salted fish, oil, or 
whale products should be brought into the British dominions that 
were not taken in English ships — nor should they be exported in any 
but English ships. The plain purport of this law was to limit the 
English and colonial trade to English channels for the profit of English 
merchants. The restriction, however, was not enforced. Foreign 
vessels could not be excluded from colonial ports without efficient 
police service, and so lax was the execution of the law that we may 
wonder if it was intended to apply to the colonies. 


The most commendable general authorities are : Channing, History of the United 
States, vol. I (1905), new and reHable; Osgood, The American Colonies in the Seven- 
teenth Century, 3 vols. (1904-1907) ; Avery, History of the United States and Its People, 
7 vols. (1904 — ), valuable for its maps; Tyler, England in America (1904) ; Doyle, 
English Colonies in America, 5 vols. (1882-1907) ; Palfrey, History of New England 
during the Stuart Dynasty, 3 vols. (1858-1864) ; Chalmers, Political Annals of the 
American Colonies (1780), an old work based on original sources, but still useful; 
Fiske, Beginnings of New England (1889) ; Ibid., The Dutch and Quaker Colonies, 
2 vols. (1899) ; Hildreth, History of the United States, 6 vols. (1849-1852) ; Bancroft, 
History of the United States, 10 vols. (1834-1874) ; Lodge, Short History of the English 
Colonies (1902), a useful manual; and The Cambridge Modern History, vol. VII 

The important general collections of sources are the British government's Cal- 
endars of State Papers, Colonial Series, America atid West Indies, 15 74-1 701, 
14 vols. (1860-1910), and Force, Tracts, 4 vols. (1836-1846). On New England, 
see: Records of Plymouth, 12 vols. (1855-1859) ; Records of Massachusetts 
Bay, s vols. (1853-1854) : Collections (1792 — ) and Proceedings (1791 — ) of the 
Massachusetts Historical Society and the Proceedings of the American Antiquarian 
Society (1849 — ); Records of the Colony of Rhode Island, 10 vols. (1856-1865); 
Colonial Records of New Haven, 15 vols. (1850-1890); Collections and Reports 
of the Connecticut Historical Society; Records of the Colony of New Haven, 2 vols. 
(1857-1858) ; Documentary History of the State of New York, 4 vols. (1849-1851) ; 
Documents Relative to the Colonial History of New York, 14 vols., and inde.x (1853- 


1861) ; Records of New Amsterdam, 7 vols. (1897) ; and the Collections, ist series, 
5 vols., and Publication Fund Series (37 vols.) of the New York Historical Society. 
See also Poore, Federal and State Charters, 2 vols. (1877), and MacDonald, Select 
Charters (1899). 

Contemporary narratives are: Bradford, PUmoulh Plantation, begun in 1630, 
discovered in England in 1855, best edition by W. C. Ford, 2 vols. (191 2) ; Mourt's 
Relation, by Bradford and Winslow, sent back to England in the "Mayflower"; 
Winslow, Hypocrisy Unmasked; and Winthrop, History of New England. The 
history of separate colonies is given in Belknap, History of New Hampshire, 3 vols, 
(i 784-1 792); Hutchinson, The Colony of Massachusetts Bay, 3 vols. (1764- 
1828); Barry, History of Massachusetts, 3 vols. (1855-1857); Goodwin, The 
Pilgrim Republic (1888) ; Richman, Rhode Island, its Making and Meaning, 2 vols. 
(1902) ; Arnold, History of Rhode Island, 2 vols. (ed. 1894) ; Trumbull, History of 
Connecticut, 2 vols, (ed. 1898) ; Atwater, History of New Haven (ed. 1901) ; O'Cal- 
laghan. History of New Netherland, 2 vols. (ed. 1855) ; and Brodhead, History 
of the State of Nerw York, 2 vols. (1872). 

For Independent Reading 

Fiske, Beginnings of New England (1889); Ibid., Dutch and Quaker Colonies, 
2 vols. (1899) ; Adams, Massachusetts, its Historians and History (1893) ; Straus, 
Roger Williams, the Pioneer of Religious Liberty (1894) ; Goodwin, The Pilgrim 
Republic (1888) ; Twichell, John Winthrop (1891) ; and Eggleston, The Beginners 
of a Nation (1897). 


Charles II and the Colonies 

When called to the throne Charles II was in no position to continue 
his father's strong policy either at home or in the colonies. He 

accordingly left the government of the latter in statu 
N®'' quo, and was content to increase the means of making 

c"fnies them yield to him a revenue. To Connecticut and 
Undisturbed. Rhode Island he gave charters confirming their former 

liberal institutions, and they were .so satisfactory that they 
served as state constitutions until 1818 and 1842 respectively. 
The former was also notable in that it united Connecticut and New 
Haven in one government. For a time the Massachusetts charter 
seemed in danger of annulment because members of the Anglican 
church could not vote, but negotiation led to a compromise by which 
the general court enacted that all persons of property and good char- 
acter should have the right to vote. But since a regular minister 
must vouch for an applicant's good character it is likely that the 
spirit of the law was nearly as restrictive as ever. 

Virginia and Maryland, loyal enough, had nothing to fear in the 
nature of constitutional change, but they were powerfully affected 

by the king's desire for money. Heavy British taxes were 
Virginia and levied on tobacco, already selling at ruinously low prices. 
Burdened. That which was used in England paid a tax of one shilling, 

ten pence a pound, and that which was reexported paid 
ten and a half pence. At this time a large recent immigration to 
Virginia and Maryland had raised the supply of tobacco beyond 
ordinary demands, and this tended to increase the distress of the 
planters. To discharge his obligations to his courtiers, Charles 
granted the quitrents and escheats of all Virginia to Lord Arlington 
and Lord Culpeper for thirty-one years. These hard measures 
were received with dismay by people to whom Stuart loyalty had been 
little less than a religion. They became discontented, and violated 
the navigation acts as freely as the traders of New England. 

The influence of the merchants was enough to secure the continu- 
ation of the navigation policy of Cromwell. The ordinance of 1651 
was reenacted, for the legality of recent parliamentary action was 



not granted, and to it was added the important amendment that 
tobacco, sugar, and other enumerated colonial products destined 
for a foreign port must first be landed in England, ^j^^ ^^ ._ 
Ireland, or some colony other than that in which gation Acts 
they were produced. The significance of this amendment of 1660, 
was that no enumerated product could be carried to for- ^^^3. 
eign countries in foreign ships, which meant that foreign '^^' 
ships would not bring their own products to the colonies because they 
could not get return cargoes. It also meant that colony ships could 
take enumerated products to British ports alone. The fact that goods 
from the continent could go to the colonies in British vessels and 
that colony ships could take goods from the continent to the colonies, 
led to violation of the law : ships could hardly be expected to make 
the return voyage in ballast when opportunity of evasion was so easy. 
To meet the difficulty a new law in 1663 provided that European 
goods with a few exceptions should only go to the colonies from 
England in English and colonial ships. The act of 1660 meant that 
enumerated products should be sold in England, and that of 1663 meant 
that all colony importations should come from England. The evasions 
of these laws in the colonies led to a third act, passed in 1673. It 
required every ship captain loading tobacco, sugar, or other enumerated 
colonial products either to give bond for landing them in England 
or to pay stipulated duties on the spot. In this way it was intended 
to make colonial trade yield profit to the British importers, exporters, 
and ship owners, as well as to the king's revenues. It was a theory 
of the time that a colony planted by the mother country and protected 
by it should in return yield advantages of trade. This policy, in 
connection with the new system of import duties, was expected to 
add largely to the king's revenues. It should be remembered, how- 
ever, that tobacco was the only enumerated article produced in the 
mainland colonies. The navigation acts did not apply to fish, timber, 
fur, wheat, pork, beef, and many other exported articles. 

When Charles came to the throne his colonies in America were 
Virginia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Plymouth, New Haven, Con- 
necticut, and Rhode Island, and to these New York, as 

we have seen, was soon to be added. But there were n^^ .. 
•11 • 1 • 1 • 1 -r^ !• 1 11 Colonies, 

still vast regions on the coast in which Englishmen had 

not settled. Out of these unsettled parts Charles created three 

new colonies, Carolina, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, all proprietary 

colonies granted to some of the leading noblemen of the court. It 

was not so much to promote colonization as to advance the interests 

of the grantees that these colonies were chartered. 

The model of the proprietary colony was the county Palatine of 

Durham, in England, over which the Bishop of Durham ruled under 

the king. Whatever the king might do in England, ran the motto 

of the law, the bishop might do in Durham. But in the proprietary 


charters the right of the proprietor was limited by the provision that 
he must make laws "by and with the consent of the freemen." 
By this provision these colonies, as well as the others, 
The Pro- were able to secure the right to make laws in their own 
Colony^ assemblies subject to the veto of the proprietors. Be- 
sides the colonies mentioned. New York, after its con- 
quest from the Dutch, and Maryland, from the beginning, were 
proprietary. This kind of colony was thought to have the ad- 
vantage of powerful aid from its owners in its early stages; but 
experience showed that the proprietors were more concerned to make 
money out of their colonies than to spend it on them. They were, 
also, not successful in keeping order, having no other military force 
than they could summon from among the inhabitants themselves. 
In Carolina this was especially true, and the end of proprietary rule 
there was a blessing. 

In 1629 the king granted Carolana, as he named it, to Sir Robert 
Heath, but the grant lapsed for want of efforts to people the region 
granted. In 1663 Charles II regranted it to eight nobles, 
Una Grant Ashley, Albemarle, Clarendon, John Berkeley, William 
Berkeley, Carteret, Craven, and Colleton. The bounds 
were latitude 36° on the north and 31" on the south, and it extended 
to the Pacific. It was seen on examination that the southern limits 
of Virginia was latitude 36° 30', and a new charter issued in 1665 with 
that line for the northern boundary of Carolina, as it was now called. 
Thus the region between Virginia and Florida was opened to settle- 

The proprietors had dreams of building a feudal state. Under 
the guidance of Ashley, now the Earl of Shaftesbury, the funda- 
mental constitutions were prepared by John Locke, 
'^^^taTcf^" ^^^^ ^^ ^^^^ early stage of his brilliant career. They pro- 
stitutions, vided for a feudal hierarchy, at the bottom of which should 
be the freemen and at the top three ranks of high landed 
lords with overwhelming power in political affairs. The system 
was highly theoretical, and the proprietors did not expect it to be 
in force at once. It was sent out to their agents with instructions 
to put into force as much of it as possible. The agents published 
it and the Carolina assemblies possibly gave it formal recognition, 
but the system was never in actual use, and very few of the land- 
gravers and caciques, the higher ranks of nobility provided for, were 
appointed in Carolina. 

Meanwhile, the ordinary forces of frontier life were 
mari^^^" carrying population to Carolina. As early as 1654 men 
Settlement, ^rom Virginia had taken land on the northern shore 
of Albemarle Sound, first securing grants from the In- 
dians. In 1665 the proprietors sent them a government and author- 
ized an assembly for the " County of Albemarle." From that time a 


steady but slow stream of population arrived from Virginia, mostly 
poor persons who found the frontier more congenial than the aristo- 
cratic life on the James. The harbors were bad, and communication 
with Europe was chiefly through Virginia. The people were mostly 
dissenters or members of no church. They were intolerant of the 
attempts of the proprietors to rule them, and there was much commo- 
tion throughout the sixty-six years of proprietary rule. It was as 
democratic a society as was planted on the coast. About 1690 the 
Albemarle settlements, now expanded to the southward of the Sound, 
began to be called North Carolina, and at a later period 
Cape Romaine was fixed as the dividing point between Carolina, 
the two Carolinas. Thus the Cape Fear river, its only 
good means of access to the sea, went to the northern province. 
It had been the scene of a futile attempt at colonization as early as 
1664, and from that time remained unsettled until 1725. It had 
water communication with the interior of the colony, and had the 
first settlements been placed here, and not in the isolated north- 
eastern corner, it seems certain that the early history of North Caro- 
lina would have been different. 

In 1670 Charleston was settled by an expedition under William 
Sayle. It grew steadily from the beginning, although it received 
little aid from the proprietors beyond the first cost of 
transportation to America. In 1680 French Huguenots Carolina 
began to arrive, settling chiefly on the Santee river. The settled, 
fertile soil and mild climate of the two Carolinas proved 
very advantageous to the settlers, who, following the custom in 
other colonies, placed themselves along the navigable streams, where 
the bottom lands were richest. The people enjoyed abundance, 
and in South Carolina men of business ability among the colonists 
made fortunes easily. Their emergence out of the mass of "adven- 
turers" was facilitated by the easy access to markets and the early 
introduction of slaves as a cheap and permanent labor supply. 
About 1693 rice began to be raised with profit. It was a staple 
product, commanding a ready market in all parts of Europe, and it 
played the part in South Carolina that tobacco played in Virginia 
and Maryland. The Albemarle settlers did not raise either rice or 
tobacco in considerable quantities. 

The English conquest of New Netherland did not bring with it 
as much liberal government as the English living under the Dutch 
regime had expected. The Duke of York by his patent 
from the king was constituted lord proprietor with power i^^yj^^.g 
almost absolute. He, however, dared not lay taxes Laws." 
and give orders arbitrarily, lest his subjects be forced into 
rebellion. His representative in the colony was Colonel Richard 
NicoUs, the governor, an astute man whose tact did much to 
make the rule of the proprietor bearable. He had promised the 


people of Long Island self-government, and to redeem his promise 
in form published the "Duke's Laws," as they were called. They 
allowed the popular election of local constables and overseers, but made 
them accountable to the governor, and they provided for trial by 
jury. More important still, the judges were to be appointed by the 
governor, and to them, sitting in one body, or assize, was intrusted 
the law-making function, subject to the approval of the governor. 
This system, which fell far short of representative government, was 
soon extended to the entire colony. It did not satisfy the people, 
but it was better than the Dutch rule, and the tact of Governor Nicolls 
did much to lull the popular discontent. He returned to England in 

In 1672 England began a war with Holland, and the next year 
the Dutch appeared before New York with 23 ships and 1200 men. 
The governor was absent in New England, and his repre- 
Kew York sentative, without an adequate force to defend the place, 
conquered surrendered after a feeble resistance in which one English- 
D^thb t ^^^ ^^^ killed. The old Dutch system of government 
restored to was reestablished, and the name of the town of New York 
England. was changed to New Orange. But when peace was made 
in 1674 New York was restored to England, and the 
king issued a new charter granting it to the Duke of York, who in 
turn reissued "the Duke's Laws." At this time Edmund Andros 
became governor, and ruled until he was succeeded in 1681 by Thomas 
Dongan. Both men were loyal servants of the proprietor and 
administered the government successfully. But the people continued 
to ask for an elective assembly. To their request the duke turned 
a deaf ear, saying that assemblies were dangerous things and often 
disturbing to good government. Under his direction the seat of 
power was the governor and council, who made the appointments 
and constituted a narrow and powerful aristocracy. 

The advocates of liberal government gained steadily in power, 
and in 1681 their opportunity came. While Governor Andros was in 
England to answer charges against his official conduct, the merchants, 
seizing on a technicality, refused to pay the duties he 
Struggle Yiad imposed as the representative of the Duke. A strong 
Assembly, petition was sent to England praying that New York 
might be governed as other colonies by a governor, council, 
and assembly, and urging that no duties ought to be taken without the 
consent of the representatives of the people. The proprietor was 
sensibly touched by the failure of revenue, and 1682 granted the peti- 
tion but with notable restrictions. The assembly was to meet and 
be dissolved at the order of the governor, the revenue raised should be 
at the disposal of the proprietor, and all laws must be approved by 
governor and proprietor. Under this system, the first assembly of 
New York met in 1683. Fifteen of its acts are preserved. One of 


them, known as the "Charter of Liberties," established the authority 
of the assembly, guaranteed triennial sessions, and provided for 
freedom of conscience and the popular assent to taxes. The whole 
fifteen seem to have been approved at first by the Duke of York, but 
before they were registered he became James II, and New York 
became a royal province. The laws now went before the Committee 
of Trade, which found that the "Charter of Liberties" asserted too 
definitely the right of the assembly to govern the colony. In fact, 
at that time there was in England a tendency to reduce the powers 
of colonial assemblies ; and since James II as king did not need his 
colonial revenue, the "charter" was disallowed. When Governor 
Dongan in 1686 received a new commission, being nowa royal governor, 
he was authorized to make the laws for the colony. Thus ended 
for the Stuart period the progress of liberal government in New York. 

In 1664, the year New York was granted to the Duke, that part of 
it which now comprises New Jersey was by the grantee transferred 
to Lord John Berkeley and Sir George Carteret and called 
New Jersey, from the Island of Jersey, which Carteret Settlement 
had bravely defended during the Puritan wars. The jersey. 
governor of New York protested in the name of his superior 
that the grant only passed title to the land, but Berkeley and Carteret 
insisted that it conferred on them the rights of government as well, 
and they proceeded to organize the government of New Jersey, with 
a governor, council, assembly, and local officers. The dispute was 
finally settled in their favor. Some settlers were already within the 
colony, Dutch and English, and more came. Among them were 
many New England men who brought in the democratic spirit of 
their former homes. At length the two proprietors divided their 
holding. Then Berkeley sold his share, the western 
part, to four prominent Quakers, among them William ^st^^^ 
Penn. In 1682 East Jersey was purchased by Quakers jersey, 
from the Carteret heirs, and soon after a small remnant 
was acquired from Fenwick, who held by a previous grant from 
Berkeley. Thus the two Jerseys became Quaker colonies. In the 
eastern part the settlers were chiefly New Englanders, in the western 
part they were Quakers. Both sections enjoyed religious liberty and 
prospered under a liberal form of government. 

But William Penn was not satisfied with a colony depending so 
largely on charters badly defined, and in 1681 he secured from King 
Charles a patent for Pennsylvania, west of the Delaware, 
and made plans to build a commonwealth on Quaker charter 
principles. The name was given by the king himself, 
much to the chagrin of Penn, who wished to avoid a semblance of 
vanity. The grant was evidently to satisfy the king's debt to 
Penn's father, who had been a British admiral. It gave Penn, the 
sole proprietor, ample power to devise a government. But recent 


experiences had taught the king that a colony was capable of becom- 
ing quite an independent affair, and it was provided that the Penn- 
sylvania laws be submitted to the king, that the navigation acts be 
enforced, and that the supremacy of Parliament be recognized. 

Penn's terms to attract colonists were liberal. To those English- 
men, Swedes, and Dutchmen who were already in the region ceded he 
offered assurances of protection, and in 1681 he sent them a governor. 
[n England he himself was ceaselessly active in measures to attract 

immigrants. His position among the Quakers was such 
f'^S^ttier^s ^^^^^ ^^^ invitation must be heard. It was sent forth 

with persuasive charms. Let all thrifty men, he said, 
who wished to establish prosperous homes in a new land and all who 
would live in just equality with their neighbors come to Pennsylvania. 
No religious discrimination should be made against any man who 
acknowledged the existence of God, but only Christians could take 
part in government. His ideas of good government were embodied 
in a published "Frame of Government." "Any government," he 
said, "is free to the people under it, whatever be the frame, where 
the laws rule and the people are a party to those laws, and more than 
this is tyranny, oligarchy, or confusion." To an age keenly alive to 
the dangers of the doctrine of divine right of kings this must have 
been a voice of comfort. 

In 1682 Penn himself arrived in Pennsylvania, accompanied by 
about one hundred colonists. In 1682 he had acquired what is now 

Delaware from the Duke of York, in order that his colony 
Arrival of flight have sea front ; and he first visited the settlements 

already planted about New Castle. Having confirmed 
the government of the three "Lower Counties," i.e. Delaware, 
he went on to Philadelphia, the site of which had already been 
selected under his directions at the confluence of the Schuylkill and 
Delaware rivers. Its broad streets, at right angles with one another, 
gave the place an air of dignity which long impressed visitors. It was 
Penn's desire that each dwelling should be in the center of a garden 
in order that Philadelphia might be "a green country town, which 
will never be burned and always be wholesome." He gave careful 
supervision to all that pertained to the colony, and said in seven 
years, "with the help of God," Pennsylvania would equal her neigh- 
bors in population. The boast was not too large, for immigrants 
came in large numbers, and in three years the population exceeded 
eight thousand. 

Penn's benevolence was seen in his policy toward the natives. He 
took no land without making treaties in which he gave articles of 

value to the savages. One treaty, in June, 1683, probably 
ttiTindians ^^ Shackamaxon, now Kensington, became famous, and 

tradition long referred to the " Treaty Elm " under which 
it was made. The result of this policy was uninterrupted peace 


with the Indians of eastern Pennsylvania. It was supported 
by the sobriety of the inhabitants and by the absence of frontier 
land squatters who occasioned most of the Indian wars in other 

Penn's "Frame of Government" provided for a council of 72 mem- 
bers and an assembly of 200, all elected by the freeholders. Like the 
Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina, it was drawn 
for a large colony and without reference to actual con- Seif-Gov- 
ditions in a new country. Penn did not attempt to put pe'^g'^V" 
it into operation. His first assembly, which met in De- vania. 
cember, 1682, consisted of a council of eighteen members 
and a lower house of 54, all elected by the settlers. To this body he 
gave the privilege of preparing the government of the colony, with 
the result that a "Great Charter" was enacted by the assembly, 
April 8, 1683, in which all the functions of government were provided 
for by the representatives of the people. Penn accepted it, for he 
wished for nothing more than that men should govern themselves in 
their own way, but in a spirit of enlightened benevolence. However, 
his personal influence had much to do with the form of government 
adopted. Another measure of this first assembly was to incorporate 
the Lower Counties with Pennsylvania. It was action very objec- 
tionable to the people of the Counties themselves, and ,- 
they soon began an agitation which resulted, early in the 
next century, in their separation as a distinct colony though still under 
the governor appointed by Penn for Pennsylvania. 

Meanwhile, Penn was called to England, partly to relieve his dis- 
tressed brethren through his personal influence with the Duke of 
York and partly to arrange a boundary dispute with Lord 
Baltimore. In the first instance he was easily successful ; ^^'^ ^®" 
for 1200 Quakers were released from prison through his England, 
intercessions. In the second he was also successful, but 
it was many years before the victory was secured. The controversy 
with Lord Baltimore goes back to the grant of 168 1, which undoubtedly 
included within Pennsylvania lands Charles I had granted to Mary- 
land. The fortieth parallel of latitude marked Maryland's northern 
boundary by the charter of 1632 ; but Penn's charter pro- 
vided that his southern line should begin with a semi- The Penn- 
circle with a radius of twelve miles from New Castle and B^un^ar^ 
proceed westward on the fortieth parallel from the point Controversy, 
at which the semicircle cut that parallel. On investiga- 
tion it was found that New Castle was 20 miles south of the fortieth 
parallel, and if the semicircle were drawn as described, it would leave 
a broad strip of Maryland in the new colony. Penn argued his rights 
against Baltimore, but could not settle the dispute. The latter naturally 
held to his rights under a grant previous to 1681 ; but Penn, who was 
bent on having an outlet to the sea, would not relent, and the dispute 


was continued by the two men and their heirs until 1760. In thac 
year the present boundary was agreed upon, and in 1767 it was run by 
Mason and Dixon. 

Even more annoying was the controversy for the possession of 
Delaware. All the colony was within the bounds of the Maryland 

patent, but the Duke of York claimed it by the conquest 
Penn gets ^f ^.j^g Dutch, and Baltimore did not dispute the claim. 
to Delaware. When, however, the Duke transferred Delaware to Penn 

the Maryland proprietor asserted his rights and seemed 
about to prevent the confirmation of the Duke's grant when Penn re- 
turned to England, 1684. The influence of the Quaker proved suffi- 
cient for his cause, and in 1685 his right to Delaware was recognized 
by the Lords of Trade. His wonderful influence with James, now 
become king, was the despair of his enemies, who started the report, 
widely believed at the time, that Penn was in reality a Jesuit. He 
came under suspicion when James was driven out, was arrested, and 
for a time, 1692-1694, his colony was taken from him. He easily 
cleared himself of the charges and was restored to his rights. In 
England many misfortunes beset him. Chief among them was the 

news that the colonists were wrangling over the powers of 
His Second government. After many gentle remonstrances he himself 
Pennsvl- came back in 1699, and for five years modified by his pres- 
vania. ence the strife which is, perhaps, inherent in a democracy 

such as he had created. Spite of the divisions the colony 
grew rapidly in numbers and wealth. 

The Stuart Reaction 

The Cromwellian period in Maryland history, so full of political 
and military combat, was succeeded by an interval of quiet. Each 

side had learned something in the conflict. The proprietor, 
at"ea*^ who easily secured the recognition of his rights from 

Charles II, knew well that turmoil interfered with industry 
and consequently lessened his income. The people longed for peace. 
The toleration act of 1649, made to meet an exigency of the time, re- 
mained a permanent result of the late conflict, and for a time Catho- 
lics and Protestants lived together amicably. 

Cecil Calvert, the second Lord Baltimore, died in 1675. Under 
him the colony was founded, and his tactf ulness had brought it through 

many dangers. His son and successor, Charles, governor 
Ideals of from 1661-1675, was a man of downright convictions, and 
Calvert. knew not his father's art of compromising. Like other 

English noblemen of the day he wished to use political 
power for the benefit 01 his family and dependents. What Charles II 
did in England, what the Duke of York did in New York, and what 
Berkeley did in Virginia, Charles Calvert, as governor and as pro- 


prietor, sought to do in Maryland. Through him the offices were 
filled with kinsmen, the suffrage was limited to freeholders, and only 
half of the members-elect were summoned to the assembly. This 
policy awakened the old spirit of resistance, and in 1676, while Lord 
Baltimore was absent, a band of sixty, incited by Bacon's example in 
Virginia, gathered to overthrow the proprietary government. The 
governor seized and hanged the popular leaders, Davis and Pate, and 
the rebellion collapsed. 

But the spirit of discontent did not disappear. The absence of 
Baltimore in order to oppose Penn's efforts in England gave oppor- 
tunity to its growth. Eventually he fell into a dispute 
with the collectors of the royal revenues in Maryland and in^j^arviand 
the king took the side of his own officers. Most important 
of all, the struggle was given a religious cast. The accession of James 
II, a Catholic sovereign, in 1685 accentuated this phase of the con- 
troversy. When the royal prince, called the "Old Pretender" by 
most Protestants, was born, he was proclaimed in Maryland by the 
proprietary governor with impolitic fervor. The Protestants, through 
the progress of immigration many times as numerous as the Catholics, 
were ready for revolt. Then came news that William of Orange had 
landed in England. No longer restrained, they formed under the 
lead of John Corde and others an Association for the Defense of the 
Protestant Religion. They seized St. Mary's, the seat of government, 
dispersed the Catholic bands who met to resist them, sent a loyal 
address to William and Mary, and held an assembly in which repre- 
sentation was on a popular basis. The new sovereign of England 
accepted the revolution in Maryland, which then became a royal 
province. In 1715 a Protestant succeeded to the Baltimore title and 
was restored to his full rights in Maryland, which from that time until 
the revolution was a proprietary colony. 

For sixteen years after the Restoration political authority in Vir- 
ginia was the will of Governor William Berkeley. As Charles II pro- 
longed his own supremacy by maintaining the "Cavalier 
Parliament" for seventeen years, so Berkeley in Virginia Despotism 
kept alive for fourteen years the assembly chosen in 166 1 
in the height of enthusiasm for the Stuarts. By this means, by 
nominating his own councillors, and by making other appointments 
judiciously, he concentrated the authority in the hands of a small 
group of wealthy planters who depended on his own favor. Mean- 
while, the price of tobacco had steadily fallen, due partly to the navi- 
gation acts and partly to over-production. Virginia had no other 
money crop, and naturally exploited that to the limit of her capacity. 
Proposals to limit production had little effect, and there was much 
suffering. Throughout this period prices of imported merchandise 
grew higher, the planters fell into debt to the London merchants, 
and the spirit of hopelessness easily ran into defiance. Berkeley's 


system of despotism was the most visible of political evils, and they 
turned against it as the cause of all their distress. 

The occasion of the outbreak was an Indian war. Within recent 
years the march of settlement had reached the Potomac valley, which 
alarmed the Indians in that region. They foresaw the 
R b°uf ^^^ ^^ their hunting grounds, and their murmuring created 

apprehension in the minds of the settlers. In 1675 the 
savages killed two planters on the Potomac, and the whites replied 
by killing the murderers and several other Indians. Reprisals were 
made by the red men, and soon the frontier was harrowed from end to 
end. Then the Susquehannocks rose in January, 1676, and killed 
thirty-six whites. The settlers fled from the border, and called on the 
governor for protection. He ordered a body of militia to the scene of 
danger, but recalled it before it had well started. His opponents 
claimed that he .derived profits from the Indian trade, and on that 
account wished to avoid a war. 

The assembly met in March, 1676, and proposed to build forts in 
the Indian country. The people objected that this only meant higher 
taxes. What they wished was a vigorous campaign to 
Bacon as- break the power of the Indians effectively. To their 
Leadership, petitions of this purport Berkeley returned an angry re- 
proof and the people began to raise troops on their own 
account. They found an excellent leader in Nathaniel Bacon. His 
fervid speeches had ample foundation in the condition of the colony, 
and he was shortly at the head of three hundred men, with his face 
set toward the frontier. To Berkeley this was treason , and he promptly 
said so in a proclamation. Two hundred and forty of Bacon's men 
then went home, but he marched on with the rest, and in a bloody 
action killed one hundred and fifty Indians. 

Meanwhile, the movement took on the form of open resistance to 
the existing regime. People were gathering with arms in their hands, 
and demanding a new assembly chosen by the freemen. 
Movement jj^ panic Berkeley promised all that was asked, and even 
Political. pardoned Bacon and restored him to the Council. In the 
new assembly a number of reforms were adopted which 
must have been as gall to the power-loving governor. The reformers 
did not trust the governor, and wished their leader to be commander- 
in-chief of the militia, probably as a guarantee that the governor 
would not repudiate his promises. They claimed that the com- 
mand had been promised, and when it was not given a violent 
quarrel arose. Bacon was impetuous, and ended by collecting five 
hundred armed men, with whom he overawed Berkeley and forced 
him to issue a commission to operate against the Indians. Then 
the army marched away to the scene of war. As soon as they 
were gone, the governor repudiated what he had done and called 
on the people to aid him in suppressing the "rebels." There was 


no response to his call, and he fled to Accomac County beyond 
Chesapeake Bay. 

The struggle thus became a real attempt at revolution. Bacon 
had begun as a reformer. If he now yielded, all his work was for 
naught. Being an aggressive man, he determined to accept 
the challenge and fight it out with the governor. His Rebellion 
influence over his followers was great enough to carry pledged 
many of them with him, but many others fell away and 
chose to follow Berkeley, who was able to return to Jamestown with 
six hundred men. Bacon was soon upon him, besieged the to\vn, and 
forced the governor to take flight. The struggle was now a social one, 
the mass of poor and moderately well-to-do people supported the 
revolt, and the great planters generally were for the old order. While 
he constructed his lines before the capital, Bacon forced the wives 
and daughters of many of his enemies to stand before his works to 
avert the fire of the governor's soldiers. When Jamestown fell he 
burned it lest it should again offer asylum to his enemies. All this 
happened during the summer and early autumn of 1676. What else 
would have come is only to be guessed ; for Bacon died October 26 
of a fever contracted through exposure, and his cause collapsed. 
Berkeley came back to Jamestown, harried out the rem- 
nant of the rebels who had taken refuge in the swamps, g^con ° 
and although the king had promised amnesty to those who 
submitted, hanged thirteen as a warning to those who defied his author- 
ity. To the captured William Drummond, who, before he joined 
Bacon, had been governor of Albemarle, probably through Berkeley's 
selection, the governor said in greeting him: "Mr. Drummond, you 
are welcome. I am more glad to see you than any man in Virginia. 
Mr. Drummond, you shall be hanged in half an hour." To which the 
prisoner replied: "As your honor pleases," and he was led away to the 

News of these commotions had ere this reached England, and the 
king had already dispatched a force of one thousand men under three 
commissioners to pacify Virginia. Berkeley's high pro- 
ceedings were well known in England, and the knowledge ^f^-^^f* 
was reflected in the instructions of the commissioners. ^^^^ 
Amnesty was offered to all rebels who would submit, and 
Jeffreys, one of the three, was to succeed Berkeley as governor. They 
found Berkeley supreme and defiant. His powerful family influence in 
England made it unwise to arrest him, and there was a period of angry 
wrangling, at the end of which the irritable old man embarked of his 
own motion. Arrived at London, he learned that the king would not 
see him. It was the last straw for a body and mind already tottering 
under the weight of years, and he died in a few months, July, 1677. 
He had in his day been a stout-hearted defender of the royal author- 
ity, a friend of the Established Church, and a worthy leader of the 


well-born Virginia gentry. His ideals were of great account in a day 
when democracy was in its cruder stages of development. His often 
quoted words on education in Virginia e.xpress the ideals 
Ideals ^^^ of his class. "I thank God," he said, "there are no free 
schools nor printing, and I hope we shall not have any 
these hundred years, for learning has brought disobedience and heresy 
and sects into the world and printing has divulged [them] and libels 
against the best government. God keep us from both." 

Bacon's Rebellion shows that Virginia society had gone beyond this 
ideal, and the royal commissioners recognized the fact. They called for 
free expressions of grievances with the result that a "char- 
RapacU^y ^ ter " of privileges was granted by the king in which im- 
portant reforms in local government were included. In 
1679 Lord Culpeper arrived as governor. He was in need of money, 
and proceeded to get it by increasing the fees, requiring "presents" in 
money from outgoing ship captains, and other similar measures. It 
was at this time that lawless bands of tobacco planters began to de- 
stroy the growing crops to relieve the over-production which produced 
low prices. In 1684 Culpeper was succeeded as governor by Lord 
Howard of Effingham, who was in no sense a better ruler than Cul- 
peper. Thus passed the years until the end of the Stuart dynasty, 
years full of commotion, in which the Virginia spirit of self-govern- 
ment slowly rose against the power of a governor appointed by the 
king but bent on nothing so much as his own advantage. It took 
many years of such experience to change the most royal of the colonies 
into an out-and-out home of revolution ; but the process went steadily 

The Colonies under the Later Stuarts, i 660-1689 

Charles II did not like the Puritan colonies, but he did not wish the 
trouble of abolishing them. It was easier to give charters to Connecti- 

cut and Rhode Island, to wink at the compromise by which 
Endand Massachusetts seemed to give the suffrage to members of 

the English Church, and to take what revenue came from 
the New Englan-d trade, than to risk war with the colonists as a result 
of suppressing the charter. Thus the years passed, for a time in safety 
for the New Englanders, while their fellow dissenters in England 
suffered from a high church reaction. When trouble at last came it 
was through the initiation of his over-zealous officers rather than 
through the will of the good-natured king. 

A more serious peril was the attitude of the Indians. The 
steady extension of the settlements from the seashore inward 

showed them that their hunting grounds were in danger, 
PMip'sWar ^^^ they came together in common defense under Philip, 

son of Massasoit, the Wampanoag, long the friend and 
stay of Plymouth colony. The war began in the summer of 1675 


with the usual outrages on the frontier, in which retaliation and pitiless 
slaughter played their parts. Knowing the habits of the whites, the 
Indians fell on them suddenly with bloody results. The Nipmucks, 
in western Connecticut and Massachusetts, joined in the struggle, and 
the river towns were ravaged. Then the Narragansetts appeared 
about to join the belligerents ; and the whites, without waiting for 
open hostilities, fell on them in a fort in what is now Kingston, Rhode 
Island, and crushed effectually their military power. But the struggle 
went on more bitterly than ever, the whites fighting for life persistently 
and steadily. After some months their superior organization began to 
tell. Canonchet, king of the Narragansetts, was run down and slain 
in April, 1676. A month later one hundred and twenty warriors were 
killed in a battle on the Connecticut, and August 12, 1676, Philip 
himself fell at the hands of Colonel Church, a noted Indian fighter. 
Through nearly two years' fighting the colonists lost severely in life 
and property. Their homes were ruined, their crops destroyed, and 
famine was avoided only by importing grain from Virginia. But the 
power of the Indians was broken, and thenceforth the settlers might 
plant in safety in the interior. The most permanent effect of the 
struggle was the damage inflicted on the beaver trade. Driving back 
the Indians inevitably limited the area of its operation. In this 
struggle all the New England colonies suffered indiscriminately, and 
all united in the measures of defense. 

The wounds of war were not healed before Massachusetts realized 
that serious efforts were to be made to annul the liberal charter under 
which she enjoyed self-government. The attack would 
doubtless be of a legal nature, the charge being made that Massa- 
the charter should be forfeited because the colony had, charted 
among other things, harbored some of the regicides. Threatened. 
evaded the king's orders in regard to a broader suffrage, 
denied the right of appeal to England, shown a spirit of indifference to 
the royal authorities in regard to the appointment of agents in England, 
and continually evaded the navigation acts. In 1676 Edward Ran- 
dolph visited Boston as a "messenger" with a letter from the king to 
the authorities. He was privately instructed to ascertain in what 
respect the colony laws were against those of England and to report on 
religious conditions, the execution of the navigation acts, and the 
numbers and strength of the colonists. He was a shrewd observer, 
and was prejudiced against the Puritans. His report was very un- 
favorable to the colony, but for a time nothing was done. 

In 1678, however, Randolph was appointed collector of the customs 
for New England and took up his residence in Boston with the design 
of breaking up smuggling, which was widespread. His numerous 
complaints sent to England all proceeded from the conclusion that 
the only way to enforce the acts of trade was for the king to take 
the charter colonies into his own hands and appoint ofi&cers who 


would support the collector. Charles II wanted little urging on this 
point ; for just at this time he was proceeding against the municipal 
charters of England. June 12, 1683, he secured from a 
Massa- partial court a verdict against the charter of London, and 

Charted "^^^ ^^y ^^^ attorney-general was ordered to take out a 
AnnuUed. writ of quo warranto against the Massachusetts Company. 
Randolph, then in England, was sent back to Boston to serve 
the writ, a task congenial to his feelings. The Massachusetts authori- 
ties retained counsel and determined to contest the suit. Storms 
intervened, and Randolph could not return the writ within the time 
set, so that it failed. Rather than go through the process of sending 
another writ to Boston the attorney-general now sued out in the court 
of chancery a writ of scire facias, which had the virtue of not requiring 
service in the colony. Under this writ the case came to a speedy 
hearing, and October 23, 1684, the charter was declared forfeited. 

Pleased with his victory, Randolph now marched against the other 
colonial charters. Pennsylvania alone was saved through the in- 
fluence of her proprietor ; but writs were issued against 
Charters in ^^® charters of Connecticut, Rhode Island, the two Jerseys, 
Danger. ^^^ Delaware. Randolph's pockets fairly bulged with 
quo warrantos. But the times were turbulent in England, 
and murmuring was heard against the king's wholesale destruction of 
charters. For this, and for other reasons, the writs were not pressed 
to an issue, and thus the other charter colonies safely outran t\v^ 
Stuart peril. 

But they came near shipwreck on a scheme for a general consoli- 
dation of the colonies north of Delaware Bay. This scheme was 
devised much earlier than 1684, and only awaited the 
The Do- forfeiture of charters to be put into operation. The result 
New°EnV "^ ^^^ Massachusetts case encouraged its promoters to 
land. proceed. Without waiting for the results of the pro- 

cesses against the charters of Connecticut and Rhode 
Island, they were treated as already annulled, and a governor was ap- 
pointed to rule over all New England. The man selected for the 
position by Charles II was the stern Colonel Percy Kirke, who could 
hardly have failed to create rebellion had he come to rule New England 
without the aid of an assembly, as his instructions ran. When James 
II came to the throne the appointment was not completed, and he 
sent Kirke to deal with the rebels at Taunton and made Edmund 
Andros governor of New England. Andros's authority extended over 
Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, and Plymouth. He was to rule 
without an assembly and with the aid of an appointed council. Rhode 
Island and Connecticut were frightened into releasing their independ- 
ence, although the latter concealed its charter and brought it forth in 
happier days. In 16S8 a new commission constituted Andros governor 
of all the colonies north of Pennsylvania, and to this consolidated 


territory was given the name of the Dominion of New England. Each 
constituent colony was to become a district in the larger organization 
and to lose its assembly, but from it were appointed members of the 
governor's grand council which ruled the Dominion. Over New York 
Francis Nicholson ruled as deputy governor, but Andros himself 
supervised the rest of his "dominion." This system, so soon to be 
overthrown, expressed James H's ideal of colonial government. 

During the short time between the fall of the charter and the arrival 
of Andros, Joseph Dudley was governor of Massachusetts. He was 
born in the colony, but was now zealous for the royal 
prerogative. He wished to make the transition in govern- Dudley 
ment as easy as possible, but the task was difficult from i^^^sadau- 
its very nature. The people were not prepared to resist : setts, 
they submitted with sullen reluctance. Now came a 
clergyman of the English Church, for whom Dudley demanded the 
use of one of the Boston meetinghouses. The demand was steadily 
refused. After a while it was agreed that the clergyman, Mr. Rat- 
cliffe, should use Mr. Willard's meetinghouse each Sunday, one 
minister preaching after the other finished and alternately taking the 
first sermon. But trouble arose because neither would stop at the 
proper time, and at length Andros seized a lot belonging to the town, 
and on it was erected King's Chapel. The new regime also gave 
offense by celebrating Christmas, by requiring persons taking an oath 
to kiss the Bible instead of holding up the hand, by ordering that 
school teachers should have licenses from the governor, and by re- 
quiring the shops to close on the anniversary of the death of Charles I. 
All these offenses, however, were surpassed by the extreme zeal with 
which the governor ordered and celebrated public thanksgivings for 
the birth of a son to their Catholic majesties in 1688. 

Within its short duration Andros's government showed itself a 
despotism. He was given the right to make laws, levy taxes, and 
administer justice. The Council was expected to offer 
advice, but he so filled it with his instruments that it but ^ndros s 
reflected his will. When he ordered the collection of the Measures, 
old taxes, no longer legal since the assembly did not exist, 
some towns refused to pay on the ground that they were assessed 
illegally. The leading men of Ipswich were arrested, tried before a 
"special commission," and fined for their resistance. To this prac- 
tical proof that their liberties were abridged was added the conviction 
that their property was in danger. By law all the ungranted land in 
the colonies belonged to the king, and Andros was to dispose of it in 
his "Dominion," subject to quitrent. He declared that most of 
the old land grants were worthless, and seemed about to take pos- 
session of farms and even village lots. But he at last showed his 
favor by saying that he would issue regular grants to all whose titles 
were in question. As he and his officers must have fees for these 


grants, the offer was not a disinterested one. Moreover, many choice 

bits of land were by influential officials declared to be subject to new 

grants, which showed the people that the new regime was rapacious as 

well as arbitrary. 

But the day of James II was run. November 5, 1688, William of 

Orange landed in England. December 22 James fled the kingdom, 

and in February, 1689, Parliament offered the crown to 

Pariia- William and Mary. It was a bloodless but complete 

mentary revolution, not only in dynasty but also in the fun- 

■J^v^J^^A^ damental theory of government. For the Stuart ideal 

in England .... .,-' ° ,. ,, 

and the of divme right was now substituted the supremacy 

Colonies. of the people in Parliament. This system could 

hardly exist in England without having its echo in 
the colonies. Not only did they seize the opportunity to wipe out, 
as in New England, all traces of James's recent innovations, but 
from that time every colonial assembly felt more strongly than ever 
its right to lay taxes and make laws within its own province. This 
conviction, slowly developing, precipitated at the close of three-quarters 
of a century a struggle between mother country and colonies, the real 
import of which was, Should the colonial assemblies or Parliament 
govern the colonies ? 

The news of William's success in England created a profound im- 
pression in Massachusetts, where the people were ripe for revolt. In 

the "Declaration" he issued on landing he said that 
Overthrown i^iagistrates unjustly turned out of office should resume 

their functions. He had in mind the municipalities of 
England, but the New Englanders took it as referring to the colonies. 
This "Declaration" was brought to Boston by John Winslow, whom 
Andros at once arrested. But the news was out, and on April 18, 
1689, the people rose in arms, seized and imprisoned Andros, Ran- 
dolph, and other officials, and proclaimed the restitution of the old 
government under Bradstreet, the last governor under the charter. 
They sent a report of their action to their agent in England and asked 
that they be allowed the old charter. Andros remained a prisoner 
in Castle William nearly a year, and was then sent to England. 

In New York, where Francis Nicholson ruled as Andros's deputy, 
affairs were also ripe for revolt. James had placed many Catholics in 

office in the colony, and this seemed to support the rumor, 
Revolution widely circulated in Massachusetts as well, that he would 
YoJk^^ introduce the Catholic religion in the colonies. Against 

Nicholson all the Protestant population was ready to act. 
Disappointment because the colony had not been given an effective 
assembly also had much to do with the popular discontent. The 
people found a leader in Jacob Leisler, German by birth, now a pros- 
perous merchant in New York. Nicholson hesitated to proclaim 
William and Mary, which aroused severe criticism by opponents of 


the Stuarts. In May, 1689, a careless remark was twisted by rumor 
until it was reported that he threatened to burn the town with his own 
hand. Violent demonstrations followed, and the deputy governor 
fled to England, leaving the government to three councillors, Phillips, 
Cortlandt, and Bayard. Leisler now came to the front. At the 
head of the popular party, he disregarded the councillors, and called 
a convention of delegates from the counties. This body met and 
appointed Leisler commander-in-chief of the province, with large 
powers of government. For two turbulent years he was in control of 
the province. 

In Maryland, as we have seen (page 91), the expulsion of the 
Stuarts from England was followed by Corde's Rebellion, thus mak- 
ing it the third colony in which force was used to bring 
about the recognition of William and Mary. In the '^h^ ^evo- 
other colonies the transition occurred peaceably. Rhode ot{j°e"*'^ 
Island and Connecticut resumed their charters and were Colonies, 
allowed the privilege on the ground that the charters had 
never been repealed or surrendered. Massachusetts was allowed to 
retain Maine, but New Hampshire, recognized as a royal colony in 
1679 but made a part of the Dominion of New England in 1686, now 
became a royal province once more. Commotions at once appeared, 
and in 1699 the province was placed under the supervision of the gov- 
ernor of Massachusetts. It was not until 1741 that it again had a 
distinct governor, although a lieutenant governor generally ruled 
during the interval. New Jersey was allowed to return to her pro-' 
prietors until 1702, when she also became a royal province. In 
the rearrangement Plymouth became a part of Massachusetts. Thus 
was distributed all the territory which had been placed under the 
authority of Andros. Virginia and the Carolinas were not materially 
affected by the revolution, and Pennsylvania, including Delaware, 
while inwardly tranquil, was taken from the hands of the proprietor 
in 1692 on the charge that he was a Jacobite, but restored in 1694, 
when his innocence had been made apparent. 

In Massachusetts the renewal of the old charter was desired by a 
portion of the people, while others thought it a good opportunity to 
get a self-governing system like that of Connecticut. 
Each side had its representatives in England, but neither ^ew 
won. The charter of 1691 was largely due to the influence ^husetts 
of Edward Randolph, just arrived in London out of cap- charter, 
tivity in Boston. By it Massachusetts became a royal 
province with a governor appointed by the king, an assembly elected 
by property-holders, and a council, not appointed by the king as else- 
where, but nominated by the assembly and approved by the governor. 
In ordinary matters the approval of laws was left to the governor, 
though the king reserved the right of sanction to certain special 
affairs. The Puritan party was dealt a severe but expected blow in 
the provision for liberty of conscience for all Protestants. 



Most of the general works referring to events narrated in this chapter are the 
same as those given for the two preceding chapters ; but specific mention must 
be made of two others, Channing, History of the United States, vol. II (1908), 
the most recent treatment by a scholar; and Andrews, Colonial Self -Government 
(1904), very clear and authoritative. For New England, New York, Virginia, 
and Maryland the sources previously mentioned are also available. For the 
newer colonies, see the following secondary works and sources : New Jersey : 
Smith, The Colony 0/ New Jersey (1765 and 1877), valuable for documents; White- 
head, East Jersey under Proprietary Governments (N. J. Hist. Soc. Collections, 
I, ed. 1875) ; and Documents Relating to the Colonial History of New Jersey, 27 vols. 
(1S80-1912), one of the three great collections of published colonial records. 

Pennsylvania: Bowdcn, History of Friends in America, 2 vols. (1851-1854); 
Proud, History of Fennsylvania [1681-1742], 2 vols. (1797-1798), still the best 
general history of the colony ; Fisher, TJie Making of Pennsylvania (1896), popular ; 
Shepherd, History of Proprietary Government in Pennsylvania (Columbia tJniversity 
Studies, 1896); Sharpless, History of Quaker Government in Pennsylvania, 2 vols. 
(1898-1899). Valuable documents are in Colonial Records, 16 vols. (1838-1852) ; 
Votes of Assembly, 1662-1776, 6 vols. (1752-1776); Hist. Soc. of Penn. Memoirs 
(1826-), and Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography (1877-). 

Delaware: The early history is closely connected with that of New York and 
Pennsylvania, q.v. The best general history is Scharf, History of Delaware, 
2 vols. (1888). On the early period see also Ferris, History of the Original Settle- 
ments on the Delaware (1846). 

North Carolina: Ashe, History of North Carolina, vol. I (1908-), the best 
treatment, but without appreciation of social and industrial development ; Hawks, 
History of North Carolina, 2 vols. (1857-1858) ; Bassett, Constitutional Beginnings 
of North Carolina (Johns Hopkins Studies, 1894), deals with poHtical institutions 
until 1729; Weeks^CJiurch and State inNorthCarolina (Ibid., i8g;i). Colonial Records, 
of North Carolina (10 vols., 1886-1S90), one of the three great collections of pub- 
lished Colonial records. 

South Carolina : jMcCrady, South Carolina under the Proprietary Government 
(1897), strictly chronological; Rivers, Sketch of the History of South Carolina to 
17 ig (1856); and The Shaftesbury Papers (S. C. Hist. Soc. Collections, 1897), an 
important early source. Many papers relating to this colony are in the North 
Carolina Colonial Records. A work still valuable is Carroll, Historical Collections 
of South Carolina, 2 vols. (1836). 

Important works especially useful for this period but relating to the older colonies 
are as follows: Tappan, Edward Randolph, 5 vols. (Prince Society Publications), 
(1898-1899) ; Whitmore, Andros Tracts, 3 vols. (Ibid., 1868) ; Hutchinson Papers, 
2 vols. (1865); Narragansett Club Publications, ist series (1866), contains Roger 
Williams's letters, a very valuable source of information; Beverley, History of 
Virginia (1722) ; Jones, Present State of Virginia (1724) ; Burk, History of Virginia, 
4 vols. (1804-1816); Henning, Statutes at Large, idig-iygz, 13 vols. (1823); 
The Beginning, Progress, and Conclusion of Baco)i's Rebellion in Virginia by T. M., 
which with other matter relating to Bacon, is in Force, Tracts and in American 
Colonial Tracts. See also Virginia Magazine of History and Biography; Sharp, 
Causes of the Revolution of i6Sg in Maryland (Johns Hopkins Studies, 189-) ; Steiner, 
Protestant Revolution in Maryland (Am. Hist. Assn. Report, 1897) ; and Mereness, 
Maryland as a Proprietary Province (1901). 

For Independent Reading 

Fisher, The Making of Pennsylvania (1896) ; Mrs. Earle, Home Life in Colonial 
Days (1898); Ibid., Colonial Days in Old New York (1896); Fisher, Tlie True 
William Penn (1899) ; Fiske, Beginnings of New England (1889) ; Kuhns, German 

and Swiss Settlements of Pennsylvania (1901). 


Development of the Colonial Conflict 

Our colonial history proceeds in two currents, one English and one 
American. The beginning of each is somewhat confused because each 
began without plan and according to special conditions. But by 
1690 each current has become more distinct. We can now see what 
England is doing for the colonies and how the latter, though widely 
differing in surroundings, begin to have common experiences and 

The English colonial policy under the later Stuarts looked to ab- 
solute government, through a governor and council and without the 
aid of an assembly. The revolution of 1689 checked 
this plan and the colonial system henceforth contained ^"^^^^^ 
the following general features : i . A desire to make the °^^^ colo^al 
royal provinces uniform in the colonies; 2. An absence Policy, 
of parliamentary control, the colonies being under supreme 
authority of the king, who established the charters, appointed the high 
officers, and passed on colonial laws ; 3. The navigation acts, designed 
to benefit English merchants and ship owners, who made up a strong 
part of the support of government. These acts were enforced by 
collectors and admiralty courts created by the king and distinct from 
the ordinary colonial officials, with whom they were sometimes in 
violent quarrel. 4. The maintenance of effective imperial control 
through the royal ofi&cials. The governor of a province was expected 
to guard the interests of the crown, resist encroachments of authority 
by the colonial assembly, and by influence over the colonial gentry to 
create, if possible, a party of king's friends among the inhabitants. 
Some of the governors performed the last of these tasks successfully, 
notably William Tryon, but others, like Andros, Nicholson, and 
Bellomont, were tactless and irascible and were continually at vari- 
ance with the colonists. 5. The growing interference of Parliament 
in colonial affairs. This began with the passage of the acts of trade, 
many times amended or defined, but it extended to the regulation of 
money, the protection of British creditors against loss in the colonies, 
the establishment of post offices, and other matters related to trade. 
From this position it was not far for Parliament to advance when it 
later decided to tax the colonists directly. 



This system grew up under men of experience who beh'eved it gave 
the best results to all concerned. To the colonies England gave pro- 
tection against other powers, and even against the In- 
T e ng s fiia^ns in extreme cases. From her they received their 
lands, their laws, and their very existence. Was it too 
much to expect they should contribute something in return to support 
the trade and maintain the glory of England ? And if this be granted, 
was it not reasonable that such a system of administration be preserved 
that the colonies should not forget filial duty or question parental 
authority ? To all of which the colonies had the plain answer that 
they acted in their own interests, as was the right of Englishmen. 

In 1690 the population of the colonies was about 220,000, most of 
them agriculturists. Wherever they lived they had the same interests 
in relation to England. Every colony had a legislature, 
V^^ . , New York having won that long demanded favor with 
Side. ^^6 triumph of William and Mary. This body became 

instinctively the guardian of the interests of the colony, 
and it was in continual opposition to the royal officials. As it be- 
came more inclined to assert colonial rights of self-government, the 
crown became more willing to resist. To each side the action of the 
other seemed aggressive, and it was resisted by all the arts known to 
able politicians. In this long struggle, from which no colony was 
exempt, the causes of dispute vary. Sometimes it is the payment of 
salaries to the governor, at other times quitrents, or land sales, or the 
issue of paper money ; but the struggle is always fundamentally the 
same, and it leads to the same end. This struggle was also an im- 
portant training school for colonial leaders. It not only formed par- 
ties, ready at the proper time for the work of revolution, but it de- 
veloped the men who led them. 

During the period now under consideration three wars between 
England and France had their reactions in America. They brought 
the Canadian Indians down on the English frontiers, 
Influence of forced the colonists to fight in defense of their homes, and 
and Indian even led them to make expeditions for the conquest of 
Wars. parts of Canada. All this gave the people confidence in 

their ability to defend their country, trained men and 
ofiicers to military duty, and developed the spirit of union in a com- 
mon cause. Hardly a colonial assembly but shows a firmer grip on the 
political life of its colony through having raised its contingents for 
the wars ; for here, as in England, before money was voted grievances 
must be redressed. A governor who wished to get his colonial as- 
sembly to raise troops for the Canadian frontier could not afford to 
quarrel with that assembly. 

But it must not be supposed that the party strife in the colonies 
measured the state of their happiness. It was an era of great indus- 
trial development. In 1689 the frontier line from Maine to the 


Savannah river followed the coast generally at not more than fifty 
miles distance. In 1760 settlers had penetrated into all parts of New 
England, and all of the South from Florida to New York 
westward as far as the Alleghanies — ^ which barrier, in- Progress of 
deed, had been crossed by the most daring ones. In 1600-1760.^' 
New York alone the frontier had not been moved west- 
ward ; and here it was the presence of the Iroquois in the Mohawk 
valley, allies of the English and useful in operations against the 
French and Algonquins, that kept the whites from some of the rich- 
est land on the continent. Throughout the settlements plenty pre- 
vailed, land was cheap, and no man who worked need fear want ; large 
families were the rule, and no parent was anxious lest there should be 
no opportunity for his children. Under such conditions population 
increased rapidly, by birth and through immigration. In 1690 it was 
about 220,000, and in 1760 it reached 1,500,000. 

Typical Colonial Controversies 

This narrative cannot deal with the political struggles of all the 
colonies. Interesting as the stories would be they lead to one end, the 
evolution of a colonial party ; and in the royal provinces 
the common keynote of the contests is opposition to royal Deveiop- 
prerogative. In the proprietary colonies it is resistance Colonial 
to the will of the proprietor, and in the liberally chartered Parties, 
colonies of Connecticut and Rhode Island its traces are 
found in the common opposition to the British laws relating to trade. 
Everywhere the spirit of self-government is apparent. What the parli- 
ament was to England the assembly under the restrictions of its charter 
aspired to be to the colony. If we consider some of the more notable 
controversies, we shall see in what manner they looked forward to the 
ultimate assertion of independence. 

Governor Phips, the first royal governor of Massachusetts, opened 
a long quarrel with the assembly when he published his instructions 
from the king directing him to get the assembly to vote 
a permanent appropriation for the salaries of the governor Colonial 
and other officials appointed by the crown. For the gjgg^ 
assembly to comply was to relinquish its best source of 
power, and the request was ignored. On the contrary, bills assertive 
of fundamental rights and laws establishing courts were passed, all 
of which were vetoed in England. This only confirmed ^^^ 
the assembly in its determination to keep a firm hand on Governor's 
the purse-strings. Phips urged the lawmakers to vote Salary in 
a regular salary, but they would only give 500 pounds Massachu- 
for services already rendered. To Bellomont, his succes- 
sor by royal appointment, they gave 1000 pounds for two years' serv- 
ice. This way of granting money after the completion of a given 


time was thought to be useful in keeping the governor friendly to the 
colony. In 1702 Joseph Dudley became governor, and ruled fourteen 
years. He tried in vain to relieve himself from the necessity of taking 
his remuneration at the discretion of the assembly. At the end of 
his term of ofl5ce they had voted him 6950 pounds. In asserting 
his right to veto acts of assembly he disallowed the election, as 
speaker, of Thomas Oakes, one of the most astute leaders of the 
opposition. He claimed that such an election was in the nature of 
an act of the legislature. A bitter controversy arose, and continued 
until, in 1725, in a so-called explanatory charter, the king ordered that 
the election of speaker should be subject to the governor's approval. 
The assembly thought it expedient to accept the restriction. The 
salary controversy, continued under Shute (1716-1728), came to a 
climax under Burnet (1728-17 29). He was instructed to insist on 
a regular salary of at least 1000 pounds, and the assembly was told 
that if it were not granted the charter would be in danger. The reply 
of the colony was to offer the governor 1700 pounds as a gift, but he 
was forced to decline it, even when the sum was raised to 3000 pounds. 
The controversy now became warm, but in the midst of it Burnet 
came to his death from the oversetting of his carriage in the water, 
and the assembly showed its favor by voting 2000 pounds to his 
children. Under Governor Belcher, his successor, the dispute was 
compromised, 1731, when the assembly came to vote the governor's 
salary annually, but at the beginning and not at the end of each year. 
New York and South Carolina in the eighteenth century began to 
grant the governor's salary year by year, and spite of the protests of 
the Board of Trade the custom was maintained. In Virginia and the 
Carolinas the salaries were provided for in general taxes, which did 
not depend on the annual votes of the assemblies. 

Closely connected with this controversy was the claim made by 
most of the assemblies that they, like the English House of Commons, 
had the sole right to initiate money bills. The Council, 
"^^^^w^" d usually appointed by the king, had the right to approve 
Money BUis. ^^^ bills, and this made it an upper chamber of the legis- 
lature. It usually supported the governor and warred 
against the assembly. The latter body, by insisting on its control 
over money bills, assumed a position of superiority, and its good will 
was so necessary to the success of any governor's administration that 
it finally won the recognition of its claim. 

In New York the legislative controversy was also prominent, and 
here it was concerned with money bills in general. The failure of the 
legislature of 1683 was resented by the people, and Leisler recognized 
the fact by calling an assembly. It authorized him to 
New York ^^^ ^^ ^^^ emergency, and the flight of Nicholson left him 
in supreme power. The council resented his assumption 
of authority, and he drove them from his presence as persons " Popishly 


affected, Dogs and Rogues." For him, a man of the people, the aris- 
tocratic councillors had no tolerance ; and he returned their contempt 
with interest. But he was a popular leader and kept a semblance of 
order in the turbulent population of Manhattan. Having proclaimed 
William and Mary he expected some recognition of his services ; but 
his sovereigns ignored him and appointed Henry Sloughter governor. 
They also sent to New York a body of troops under Ingoldesby with 
instructions to restore order. Ingoldesby arrived before the new gov- 
ernor landed and demanded the surrender of the fort. He showed no 
written orders, and Leisler refused to yield. Then Sloughter came and 
demanded the delivery of the fort, also without showing his authority. 
After some hesitation Leisler retired. He was arrested for treason, 
tried by a special court over which Joseph Dudley presided, sentenced 
to death, and executed. Tradition has it that Sloughter signed the 
death warrant while drunk. Be that as it may, Sloughter died a few 
weeks afterwards, a victim of inebriety. Leisler had his faults, but 
he did not deserve death, and leaving him a victim to hatred of his 
enemies is a blot on the reputation of the British government. 

Sloughter was instructed to summon an assembly " according to the 
usage " of the other colonies. He and his successors took this to 
mean that they might at will summon, prorogue, dissolve, 
and apportion the membership of the lawmaking body. Struggle for 
An obedient assembly was thus kept long in power, in ^^e^^™*'^^ 
one case for eleven years. But not many assemblies York, 
were obedient, and one of their most common protests 
was to demand frequent elections. Their persistence won a measure 
of success in 1743, when a colonial law was approved by the king, 
making it necessary to have a new election once in seven years. 

In 1692 the New York assembly began a long controversy over the 
right to vote money. A committee was appointed to investigate the 
expenditure of money in support of frontier defense. 
Its real business was to see if the governor, whose salary The Control 
the assembly would not vote in a regular way, was not ^ Money 
making up the deficiency by diverting to his own use Ng^y York. 
some of the funds appropriated to support the gar- 
rison. The committee could do nothing because the governor 
did not allow them to see the muster-rolls and accounts. The next 
assembly (1694) was determined to have its way, and resolved that it 
would do no business until it had inspected the accounts. Governor 
Fletcher demurred for a while, but at last sent them the books of the 
receiver-general. From this time forward the assembly regularly 
inspected the accounts and might know how the money it had appro- 
priated was spent. 

In 1 702-1 708 Edward Hyde, Lord Cornbury, was New York's gov- 
ernor. Without public or private morals, he left a stain on the gov- 
ernorship blacker than was left by any predecessor or successor. He 


was cousin-german of Queen Anne, whom he resembled, and was 
said to have appeared in woman's clothes to show colonial society 
what the queen looked like. The assembly voted money 
New Y"o?k° ^° fortify the harbor of New York, but at the next ses- 
sion it appeared that he had diverted most of it to his own 
use, although he had been voted a present of 2000 pounds to pay the 
expenses of coming to his post. The deed was possible because all 
money hitherto voted was to the king to be used for the province, and 
once it was in the hands of a royal ofhcial it might be taken for 
governor's salary or any other purpose authorized by the king. Pre- 
ceding governors had followed this practice, but not so flagrantly, and 
the assembly seized the opportunity to check it. A resolu- 
A Colonial ^^^^ passed to vote no more money except such as was 
paid out by a treasurer appointed by the assembly and 
responsible to it. The position was so reasonable that the authorities 
in England approved it so far as extraordinary grants went. After that 
the assembly assumed that most appropriations were extraordinary. 
Nor was the Quaker Commonwealth free from controversy. Penn's 
humane ideals never failed him, but they were better suited for an 
PoUtical infant community than for the large province he soon had 
Change in on his hands. So many reports of dissension reached him 
Pennsyl- that in 1 699 he returned to Philadelphia, hoping, he said, 
vania. ^q gj^^j j^j^ ^j^yg there. He found the people divided. 

Quary, surveyor-general of the royal revenue, complained that the 
navigation laws were not enforced, the people complained that the 
proprietor did not develop the colony or keep his promises in granting 
lands, while the proprietor could reply that the people did not pay quit- 
rents and that the colony itself had impoverished its owner. More 
than all, the three counties which became Delaware were in dispute 
over their rights in the colonial assembly. To all the malcontents 
Penn made earnest pleas for moderation. The upshot was "The 
Charter of Privileges," passed by the assembly and council and ap- 
proved by Penn in 1 701 on the eve of his departure for England, whither 
he was called by the news that Parliament was about to abolish all the 
proprietary colonies. This "charter" represents the experience of 
Americans as it was worked out at that time in the problems of self- 
government in the New World. If any other colony had been allowed 
to revise its constitution on the basis of what it had discoverd through 
its own struggles the result would probably have been much like that 
in Pennsylvania, where the mild proprietor was not much of a weight 
on the constitution-makers. 

Penn's "Charter" provided for four representatives elected by 

, the freemen of each county to make up an assembly, 

Charter ^^ which when it met was to elect its own officers, pass on the 

qualification of its members, prepare bills, and have all 

rights of an assembly chosen by " free-born subjects of England." The 


appointment of governor and councillors remained with the proprietor, 
all who believed in God were to have freedom of conscience, and all 
Christians could hold ofhce. In 1705 a supplementary- 
act provided that only Protestants could be members of Delewareto 
the assembly. The dispute with Delaware was settled by separate 
allowing it to have a separate assembly from Pennsylvania ; Assembly, 
but each colony remained under Penn's jurisdiction, and 
the "Charter" embodied the government of each until the revolu- 
tion. It was the habit, also, for the same governor to rule over each 

Probably from an early date the Quakers were less than a majority 
of the population of Pennsylvania, but they were the most influential 
portion ; and their peculiar belief brought some annoying 
situations into existence. For example, they refused to Po^'*''>" 
take oaths, and sometimes even to administer them. They Quakers. 
passed laws to allow witnesses in court to affirm, but these 
were disallowed by the king, who, by the original charter, reserved to 
himself the approval of laws. Then the assembly renewed their enact- 
ment, incorporating it in the law creating courts so that its . -. . 
veto, which followed, left the colony without judicial tri- 
bunals. This was no great inconvenience to the Quakers, for they 
usually settled their disputes among themselves ; but it worked hard- 
ship on others. In 17 18 the contest ended with a compromise: 
the assembly adopted the severe English penal code and in the 
same bill allowed affirmations ; and the king approved their action. 

From the beginning of their history the Quakers opposed war ; from 
which it followed that the colony not only had no militia system, but 
it refused to vote money to erect forts on the frontier. 
Its pacific relations with the Indians warranted this course r? *.° 
so far as internal problems were concerned ; but when service. 
French influence in the Ohio valley created external prob- 
lems, over which Quaker good will could exert no direction, the non- 
resistance principles of Pennsylvania became a serious danger. At 
this time Benjamin Franklin had become a force in the colony, and 
when in 1739 the assembly refused to raise a militia at the request of 
the king, he started an association to establish a volunteer organiza- 
tion. From a lottery he got funds to build fortifications. His action 
was approved by practical men, and weakened the opposition of the 
Quaker party. In 1745 the assembly appropriated 4000 pounds for 
"bread, beef, pork, flour, wheat or other grain" in support of the 
garrison in newly captured Louisburg. The governor used part of it 
to buy gunpowder on the ground that it was "other grain," and his 
action caused so little scandal that in 1746 the assembly voted the king 
5000 pounds without stipulating the purpose for which it was to be 
used, although it was well known that it would be used for military 


From this time we may consider the religious motive in the matter a 
subordinate one; but it was replaced by a political motive. In 1754 

the Indians and French were raiding on the western frontier 
A Militia ^^^ j|- ^^^g necessary for the militia system to be taken 
Estab™shed. under public control. The assembly would do nothing 

unless the estates of the proprietor were taxed. They 
referred to the large amount of his unsold land from which he had no 
revenue, and through his influence the law failed. Then came the 
defeat of Braddock, followed by frontier outrages. So strong a cry 
went up from the non-Quaker inhabitants that the ministry in London 
heard it and brought a bill into Parliament to require members of the 
Pennsylvania assembly to take the oath of allegiance. This would 
effectually exclude Quakers from that body. Alarmed at the prospect 
of a permanent discrimination, they now decided to yield temporarily. 
Through the intervention of friends the bill was withdrawn from Pa rlia- 
ment and the Quakers in the colony agreed not to stand for election 
to the next assembly. In a legislature thus purged of old ideas it was 
easy to pass laws for a militia and for fortifications. 

Penn's last days were full of financial troubles, to which were added 
mental infirmities. He died in 1718, leaving his colony to his four sons, 

for whom his widow acted until her death in 1726. Two 
Later His- ^f i}^q sons, John and Thomas, resided in Philadelphia, 
Penn ^ ^^^ former for one and the latter for fifteen years. The 
Family. development of the province made the proprietors very 

rich, and the demand that they should pay taxes on their 
lands became strong. They resisted successfully, since they controlled 
the governorship. In 1763 John Penn, grandson of the founder, be- 
came governor, and continued in office until the Revolution. The later 
Penns returned to the Church of England, which tended to widen the 
breach between the family and the colonists. In 1778 the state of 
Pennsylvania annulled the charter and allowed the proprietors 130,000 
pounds in lieu of their rights. Later, 17 86, a supplementary grant 
was made to them, and the king himself gave an annuity of 4000 

The history of Pennsylvania shows the proprietary colony at its 
best : that of Carolina shows it at its worst. The eight proprietors 

knew nothing of their colony, which they did not visit. 
Mrsnife^^ They had no other interest in it than to get money, and 
Carolina. when that failed they ceased to pay attention to its 

needs. They had no military force with which to pre- 
serve order or to enforce their own rights. By 1690 the shares had 
passed for the most part into the hands of a group of merchants who 
were as much disappointed as their predecessors with the enterprise. 
Meanwhile the people of the colony grew in numbers and prosperity. 
About 1 690 the northern settlements began to be called North Carolina. 
In that year a governor was appointed for the first time for all Carolina, 


with authority to appoint a deputy governor for the northern settle- 
ments. In 1 7 14 Charles Eden was made governor of North Carolina 
without reference to the governor of South Carolina. 
At this time North Carolina was in serious commotion, c^oijna 
Its population was strongly dissenting, among them 
many Quakers. The official class were of the Church of England, 
and by tendering the oaths of supremacy to the Quakers elected to 
the assembly they could rule the colony. The result was a social 
revolt, the mass of poor men arrayed against the aristo- 
crats and conservatives. After seven years of commotion RebeiUon. 
the former had a leader in Thomas Cary , who, in 1 7 1 1 , took 
up arms, but was defeated and captured with the aid of troops from 
Virginia. Immediately afterwards came an Indian war in which 
only aid sent from Charleston enabled the whites to 
triumph. In 171 5 South Carolina had a fierce struggle ^^^'^^'^"^ 
of her own and received valuable aid from her northern carolinas. 
sister. Thus the Carolinas passed safely through that 
stern Indian struggle which came to most colonies when the 
savages realized the significance of the white man's advance into 
the interior. 

In 1729 seven of the proprietors sold their rights to the crown. The 
one remaining was Carteret, later Earl of Grenville. In 1743 he re- 
ceived in lieu of his rights as proprietor a broad belt of land in the 
northern part of North Carolina, to have in fee the ungranted parts 
and to collect the quitrents on the granted portion. This vast estate 
was not to be managed without serious trouble in a community in 
which the rights of feudal proprietors were not tenderly regarded. 
But the conversion of the two colonies into royal provinces was bene- 
ficial to their development. 

Five royal governors ruled in North Carolina, and the pathway of 
each was strewn with thorns. The most continual quarrel was in 
regard to the payment of quitrents. These were a per- 
petual obligation imposed on land when first granted and The Quit- 
to be paid by whomever owned the land. They do not ^®°* ^°°T 

. trovcrsv in 

mean that the grantee did not have fee-simple title, as North 

has sometimes been assumed, but were in the nature of a Carolina, 
permanent land tax. To pay them was irksome to the 
settlers, who found many ways of evasion. One difiiculty was that 
they were payable in tobacco or other produce, and that the expense 
of collecting from small farmers ate up the value of the proceeds. To 
obviate this the governor ordered that quitrents be paid at certain 
specified places. The inhabitants protested, and a law passed the as- 
sembly to authorize payment at the home of the landowner, where most 
other rents were paid. The governor vetoed the bill, and a deadlock 
resulted. For many years the revenue from quitrents was very 


Meanwhile, South Carolina grew in wealth through the cultivation 
of rice and indigo. Great numbers of negro slaves were imported, so 
that in 17 19 there were 12,000 to a white population of 
s'^^fh^^^ ^^ 9000. The accumulation of wealth gave society an aris- 
Carolina, tocratic tone, and Charleston became a seat of elegance 
and luxury. One result was to lessen respect for the weak 
authority of the proprietors, and about 1716 a series of reforms began. 
Hitherto all the elections were held in Charleston and all freemen were 
allowed to vote. It was claimed that persons in the interests of the 
proprietors thus controlled the elections, going so far as to allow In- 
dians and non-resident sailors to vote in order to carry their cause. In 
1 7 16 the Indian war was just over. The proprietors had contributed 
nothing to the defense of the colony, and their influence in the assembly 
was low. The moment was favorable for election reforms, and a law 
passed directing that future elections be held in the parishes with a 
small property restriction for voters, thus shifting the center of power 
from the Charlestonians to the planter class. The same assembly de- 
cided to appoint its own receiver for taxes paid by the In- 
^/p'^'^'^"^ dian traders. Both laws were promptly vetoed by the 
tary Rule. proprietors, together with a previous law levying duties. 
The people were in a rebellious mood, when news circulated 
of an expected attack from the Spanish in Florida. The governor 
called out the militia, who at once constituted themselves an army of 
revolt against the proprietary regime. New elections of the assembly 
had been held, and the members met, resolved themselves into a con- 
vention, after the example of the convention parliament of 1689, re- 
pudiated the authority of the proprietors, and asked the king to rule 
the colony as a royal province. The quicl-aiess with which the Board 
of Trade acceded to this request gives some strength to the suspicion 
that it connived at the revolution in the first instance. The pro- 
prietors, however, retained their rights to the land until the two col- 
onies were sold to the king in 1729. 

In its new capacity, South Carolina had peace, and developed in 
wealth. Great slave plantations became the rule, whereas in North 
Carolina small farms were prevalent. In 171 7 the popu- 
The Two lation of the two colonies was about 19,000 and 9000 re- 
Compared, spectively, in 1760 it was 100,000 and 93,000. Within 
this period the slave population grew from 12,000 to 70,000 
in South Carolina and from an inconsiderable number, probably 1500, 
to 16,000 in North Carolina. The latter colony was ever noted for its 
democratic conditions. It had no good harbors and no staple products 
out of which riches could be gathered. It was a land of simple abun- 
dance and the refuge of those who wished to avoid the aristocratic con- 
ditions of the neighboring colonies. 


Georgia Founded 

What Penn was to the Quaker colony General James Oglethorpe 
was to Georgia. As a member of parliament, philanthropist, and 
colony planter, few men of his day deserve more our re- 
spect. His syinpathy was drawn to the inmates of the 
debtors' prisons, and he wished to plant a colony in which they 
might begin life anew. Many noblemen, clergymen, and others sup- 
ported the plan, and in 1732 the king by charter created the Georgia 
"Trustees," a company to plant a colony between the Savannah river 
and Florida. The king and his advisers were opposed to proprietary 
governments in general, but they relaxed their opposition 
in this case because the new colony would make a " buffer " v^® Colony 
between South Carolina and the Spanish possessions. But projected. 
as a matter of simple precaution it was provided that the 
charter should expire in twenty-one years, after which Georgia 
would become a royal province. 

The trustees lost no time in announcing their plans of settlement. 
Recent affairs in South Carolina showed that when slaves far exceeded 
the white population the capacity of defense was lessened, and it 
was determined to exclude slavery from Georgia. With an eye, also, 
to the character of the expected debtor immigrants it was provided 
that one person should own no more than 500 acres of land and that 
grants should be strictly entailed to male heirs, in default of which 
they should revert to the trustees. While these regulations may have 
been warranted by the conditions they were devised to meet, they could 
only discourage the immigration of normally competent persons. 
Every colony in America had an abundance of land for those who 
would take it, and a new colony in an exposed position could not ex- 
pect to have settlers unless it offered liberal terms. The prohibition 
of slavery was well intended by the trustees, but it displeased the 
actual settlers, who sent to England urgent pleas for the repeal of the 
regulation. They saw how men prospered in South Carolina through 
slave labor and resented the arbitrary power which kept them from 
the same fortune. 

In January, 1733, Oglethorpe, who was appointed governor, arrived 
in Charleston with the first Georgia colony, about one hundred men, 
women, and children. Indian treaties were made by 
which the Creeks, inhabiting the Georgia coast, ceded sgtu^ed* 
the site of Savannah and took the settlers for allies. 
Other English settlers came slowly ; the trustees, like other proprietors 
of colonies, spent little money on the enterprise after the enthusiasm 
of launching it was gone. Only a small proportion of those who went 
over were debtors. In 1734 a company of Protestants from Salzburg 
arrived, and later on other Germans landed. Another source of popu- 


lation was the Scotch Highlanders, who settled along the Altamaha. 
In 1760 the population was only gooo, of whom 3000 were slaves. 

The colony was planted in defiance of Spain's claim to all the coast 
as far north as Charleston. Oglethorpe ignored her protests and 

challenged the Spaniards by erecting a fort at Frederica, 
^^H^*h°'^^^ the southern extremity of his charter limits. He even 
Spaniards, went SO far as to found small posts as far as the St. John's 

river, within the bounds of Florida. So threatening 
became the situation that he went to England for assistance. He 
was authorized to raise a regiment, and returned to Georgia, 1738, 
with instructions not to fight until attacked. In 1739 began a war 
with Spain. Oglethorpe now marched against St. Augustine, but 
withdrew after a short siege. In 1742 the Spaniards retaliated by 
sending a strong expedition against Frederica. Oglethorpe had a 
force much inferior, but by utilizing favorable natural defenses drove 
off the invaders. The end of the war, 1748, found Georgia undisturbed 
by Spain, and thenceforth disappeared any doubts of the success of 
the new colony. 

Now comes into greater prominence the protests of the settlers against 

the paternal restrictions of the well-intentioned trustees. George 

. . Whitfield, the missionary, who had founded an orphanage 

Removed" ^^ Georgia, was one of those who urged the free admission 

of slaves. So strong was the cry of the objectors that 
one by one the restrictions were removed. In 1749 the importation 
of slaves was allowed, with certain safeguards as to the proportions 
of slave and free population. In 1750 the objectionable restrictions 
on land owning were removed, and at the same time the importation 
of rum, hitherto forbidden, was allowed. These relaxations gave 
greater freedom to individual enterprise, and the result was favorable. 
The early government of Georgia was very paternal, as became a 
colony founded for the inmates of debtors' prisons. There was no 

assembly, laws were made by the trustees, resident in 
in°Georria° England, and the governor had extensive powers. When 

Oglethorpe at last went to England, 1743, a president 
and four assistants were left in charge. In 1751 an assembly was 
summoned. It was not to make laws, however, but to suggest 
them to the trustees. At this time Oglethorpe and his associates were 
discouraged with their attempts to govern men more wisely than 
they could govern themselves. In view of the approaching termina- 
tion of their charter, 1753, they thought it well to surrender their 
authority over the colony. Thus Georgia became a royal province 
and prospered under a governor, council, and assembly. 


Growth of New France 

While the English gradually extended their agricultural settle- 
ments from the coast to the Alleghanies, France was establishing a 
less solid occupation in the Mississippi Basin. Her flag 
was carried forward by traders, who at wide intervals English and 
built forts occupied by small garrisons. Such occupancy jj^^tjou ° °~ 
did not alarm the natives. In fact, it pleased them ; for 
the game was not driven away, and an abundance of manufactured 
goods and a convenient market for furs were assured. To main- 
tain the forts was expensive, and if war should come, the defense 
of the vast region must be made by troops sent from Canada or 
France. The French power, therefore, was not so well rooted in the 
soil as that of England on the coast. 

The beginning of French colonization in America was in the six- 
teenth century, when Coligny, the Huguenot leader, made an unsuc- 
cessful attempt to establish in "Florida" a refuge for his 
coreligionists. In 1562 he sent out Ribaut, a bold Cohgnys 
mariner, to explore the coast and select a place for settle- « Fionda." 
ment. Ribaut was delighted with the country, and left 
thirty men at Port Royal harbor in a rude palisade, called "Charle- 
fort " for Charles IX. Idleness and want soon brought them to 
mutiny, and they escaped to Europe in a boat of their own construc- 
tion. Starving and reduced to cannibalism, they at last sighted the 
French shore, only to be made captives by an English vessel which 
happened to be near. 

Coligny was not discouraged, and in 1564 sent out a colony under 
Laudonniere. It settled at the mouth of St. John's river and built 
Fort Caroline, named, like its predecessor, in honor 
of the king. Hunger and discontent soon appeared, and Second 
the colony was on the verge of ruin when a second expedi- caroHne °^ 
tion brought supplies and restored the spirits of the 1664. 
people. What would have followed does not appear ; 
for a greater danger than any hitherto encountered was at hand. 
The Spaniards of Cuba had heard of the settlement, and September 19, 
1565, Pedro Menendez, with a strong Spanish force, surprised the 
fort and slew the Frenchmen who did not escape to the forest or declare 
themselves Catholics. Leaving a garrison on the site, he founded 
St. Augustine, fifty miles southward. The Florida coast commanded 
the route by which Spanish treasure ships returned from the Gulf 
of Mexico, and it was not to be left in the hands of a foreign power. 
News of Menendez's atrocities caused great commotion in France, 
and in the spring of 1568 Dominique de Gourgues appeared at 
Fort Caroline. He surprised the garrison, slew those who re- 
sisted, and hanged the prisoners. Over the slain Huguenot? 


Menendez had put up this notice: "I do this not as to Frenchmen 
but as to Lutherans." De Gourgues left over the dangling bodies 
of the Spaniards this inscription: "I do this not as to Spaniards, 
nor as to Marranos, but as to traitors, robbers, and to murderers." 
But for all this St. Augustine continued to exist and Florida remained 
a Spanish colony. 

In Canada, where Cartier's explorations, 1534, 153 5, and 1541, 
had given France a claim by right of prior discovery, French coloniza- 
tion fared better. Fur traders continued to visit the 
France g|-_ Lawrence, but no other impetus toward planting 

toward settlements was seen until the region came under the 

Canada. eyes of Champlain, who arrived as the guest of a trader 
in 1603. From that time his interest was keenly aroused. 
The next year he returned with De Monts,who had a charter to plant 
a colony in La Cadie, or Acadia, as the French had called the region 
from northern Nova Scotia to Philadelphia. A settlement made 
at Douchet Island proved unsatisfactory, and the colonists moved 
p to the neighborhood of Annapolis, where they managed 

to withstand the cold and perils of the forest for many 
years. De Monts, however, was discouraged, and withdrew from the 
undertaking. But Champlain's zeal was unabated. What he had 
seen only made him love the long stretches of shore and forest along 
which he sailed for many a day. In 1608 he returned to 
F ^^ff^d plant a trading colony at Quebec, which his discerning 
i6o8. ' ^y^ selected as the key to the St. Lawrence valley. Fur 
trading supported his colony, but his adventurous spirit 
sought other fields. The Indians around him, Algonquins, were at 
feud with the Iroquois, and Champlain was induced to aid them. 
Early in 1609 he, with two other whites, joined a war party going 
southward. He eventually reached the lake which now has his 
name, and on its shore a battle was fought. As the Iroquois advanced 
across a plain, Champlain in full armor showed himself, shot two 
Indians dead, and wounded another. A third was killed by one of 
the other whites, and the savages fled. From that time the French 
. . settlements in Canada had the hostility of the powerful 

the^Iroquois IroQUois Confederacy. Champlain had naturally thought 
best to make friends with the Indians among whom he 
had settled, and for many years his action produced no bad results ; 
but there came a time when the French wished to extend their influence 
into the region now known as western New York, and were pre- 
vented by Iroquoian hostility. By this small occurrence in 1609 
the eastern and southern shores of Lakes Ontario and Erie were 
kept out of French hands and made accessible at the proper time to 
the English-speaking people. 

New France, as the St. Lawrence region was now called, grew 
slowly. It was only a series of trading posts, and so little concerned 


with agriculture that in 1628, when war interrupted communi- 
cation with Europe, only one family in Quebec had raised 
enough food to support it through the winter. In 1660 q"^.}^ ^ 
there were 3000 white settlers, including the fishing posts New France, 
in Acadia. In 1629 Quebec was taken by the English, 
but Charles I restored it to France. Champlain died at Quebec 
in 1635. 

It was about this time that the Jesuits turned their attention to 
Canada. They proposed to convert and civilize the Indians, and 
thus establish French power in the Lake region while 
they delivered into French hands an immense fur trade, t^e Jesuits 
With the Algonquins on the St. Lawrence they were 
easily successful : then they sent missions to the Hurons, on the shores 
of the lake which now bears their name, and here, after some delays, 
they also succeeded. With the Iroquois they could, for a long time, 
make no headway. It is not probable that an Indian nation under 
French influence, however civilized, could have kept the English 
permanently out of the region south of Lake Erie ; and it is certain 
that the Iroquois, through their hostility to everything French, 
defeated the hopes of the Jesuits and made easier the progress of the 
English. But the work of the priests commands our esteem. They 
went without hesitation into the most dangerous places, giving up 
their lives as readily to torture as to disease. Their "Relations," 
reports of their experiences, were published contemporaneously in 
France and stimulated popular interest in Canada, while for posterity 
they are a valuable source of knowledge of Indian life. On the savages 
themselves the missionaries exerted a good influence. The tendency 
to make war continually was lessened, the most barbarous forms of 
torturing captives disappeared, and their general antipathy toward 
the whites was softened. On the other hand, the power of the Jesuits 
was used to promote French dominion, and some of the most cruel 
raids against the New England frontier were instigated by priests. 

Let us now turn to the Iroquois, for many years the foes of the 
Jesuits. Five nations, the Mohawks on the east, and next in order, 
the Oneidas, Onondagas, Cayugas, and Senecas made 
up the Confederacy. A sixth nation, the Tuscaroras, th^JifL^uois 
of North Carolina, did not join the Confederacy until 
1713. In the time of Champlain the strength of the Iroquois was 
about 2500 warriors; but superior central organization, with the 
courage of the men, made it the most powerful Indian organization 
of the North Atlantic coast. The wars against the French and the 
Algonquins were usually led by the Mohawks, those against the Hurons 
by the Senecas. By 1650 the Hurons were broken and dispersed, and 
by 1750 the Iroquoian authority through a series of wars was imposed 
in a loose way over all the western tribes as far as Lake Michigan, 
the Illinois, and the Mississippi, and southward to the northern 


limits of the present states of Mississippi and Alabama. Armed by 
the Dutch, the Mohawks and neighboring nations made life wretched 
for the French and Algonquins on the St. Lawrence. In 1665 Louis 
XIV sent a fine regiment to America to chastise this fierce enemy. 
In two fruitless expeditions it destroyed some villages which the 
inhabitants had abandoned, and only succeeded in stimulating the 
Mohawks' hatred of France. At this time (1664) New York passed 
into English hands. Its new masters early appreciated the importance 
of Iroquoian friendship, and in 1684, in a memorable treaty at Albany, 

induced them to acknowledge themselves English subjects. 
the^EngUsh Governor Dongan, of New York, thereupon informed 

the governor of Canada that the province of New York 
included the Iroquois lands, and caused the arms of the Duke of York 
to be afiixed to walls of the Iroquois towns. The reply was a French 
invasion which accomplished nothing. For the time it was believed 
that the French would make a determined attempt against New 
York, which was not able to offer serious resistance. It was partly 
to have a consolidated force strong enough to meet this danger that 
James II created the short-lived Dominion of New England. France 
and England were now keenly alive to the importance of their Amer- 
ican possessions, and their wars for the next seventy years always 
kindled the conflict on the American frontier. But that part of our 
story must be deferred while we consider the extension of French 
authority in the Mississippi valley. 

The missionaries to the Hurons were the first Frenchmen to have 
knowledge of the rich country beyond Lake Erie. Though driven 

out of it by the dispersion of the Indians, they kept alive 
an^ToUer ^^^ knowledge of its wonders. In 1673 Father Marquette, 

member of the indomitable society, and Joliet, a trader, 
going through this country, came to the Wisconsin river, down which 
they took their canoes until they came to the Mississippi, which they 
followed to the mouth of the Arkansas. They desired to reach the 
salt sea, but prudently turned back lest they fall into Spanish hands 
and knowledge of their discovery perish with them. 

What they failed to do was achieved by La Salle, one of the most 
intrepid of the French explorers. He wished to organize the fur trade 

on the lakes, and from the profits carry on extensive 

discoveries in the region beyond. A license was obtained 
from the king, and money was subscribed by friends, but the opposition 
of Quebec merchants and the Jesuits was a severe impediment. Before 
complete ruin overtook his scheme he set out in December, 1681, 
to follow the "Great River" of Marquette and Joliet to the sea. 
With him were Tonti, a faithful friend, and fifty-three others. French- 
men and Indians. From Lake Michigan they ascended the Chicago 
to its source and thence by portage to the Illinois, down which they 
reached the Mississippi, and April 6 they passed out one of its sluggish 


mouths to the Gulf of Mexico. The Indians were friendly and as- 
sured La Salle that he was the first white man to explore the river ; 
he took possession of its banks in the name of the king of France. 
News of his achievement aroused enthusiasm in France, and in 1684 
he set out with a colony and four ships, fitted out by the king, to settle 
at the mouth of the Mississippi. After many hardships he landed on 
the Texas coast, whence he started overland to find the river he 
had traversed and to communicate with Tonti, whom he expected 
to arrive from Canada. In the interior he was murdered xr- n h 
by his own men, 1687, and of his followers only a few 
survived starvation on the great plains or escaped the hands of the 

La Salle's unfinished work was taken up in i6g8 by dTberville 
and his brother, Bienville, both notable men in New France. In 
January, 1699, they arrived by sea and planted a trading 
post at Biloxi, on the mainland near the mouth of the Louisiana 
river. Bienville was governor, and the country was called ^^^^ ' 
Louisiana, for Louis XIV. For many years the fate of 
the place seemed doubtful. The Indian trade was engrossed by the 
English and Spaniards, and the colonists were not inclined to become 
agriculturists. In 1712 the monopoly of the Louisiana trade 
was granted for fifteen years to Crozat, but he managed it so badly 
that it yielded small returns. Five years later the colony, including 
trade privileges and the ownership of ungranted lands, passed into 
the hands of Law's Mississippi Company. Its immense possibilities, 
which were carefully exploited by the adventurers, gave a basis of 
confidence to the company ; but the final collapse was certain. Before 
it came, however. New Orleans was founded, 17 18, and became 
the seat of government of Louisiana. In 1731 the company gave 
up its rights, and the colony was thenceforth governed by the crown. 
It had no popular assembly, but the authority was in the hands of 
a governor with local courts, from the decisions of which appeal lay 
to the king. The population grew slowly, and by the middle of the 
century it was not more than sLx thousand, one third being slaves. 
At this time St. Louis, Natchez, and several other interior posts had 
been established. 

The French and Indian Wars 

Three great Frenchmen influenced the history of New France late 
in the seventeenth century, — -Louis XIV, Colbert, his minister, and 
Frontenac, twice governor of Canada, 1672 to 1682 and 
1689 until his death in i6g8. The first and second acted to- p°y *" 
gether, creating in 1664 a consolidated company with trade 
monopoly for all the French colonies. To it the king offered bounties 
for all goods exported or imported and generous assistance in the 


early years of the enterprise. To encourage infant industries liberal 

grants were made, immigration was stimulated, marriage was en- 

• YTv couraged, and large families were rewarded in many 

and'colbert. ^ays. Louis XIV watched eagerly the reports of Canadian 

population. They could have given him little comfort 
for all he had spent, since in 1679 the colony contained but 9400 
whites, and there were only 6983 horned cattle, 719 sheep, and 
145 horses. Colbert died in 1683, but his policy in Canada was 

Frontenac was chiefly notable for his ability in dealing with the 
Iroquois. In 1673 he made a treaty with them and built a fort where 

Kingston now stands. He said that with a vessel on 
Plans ° '^ Lake Erie and a fort on the Niagara he could now control 

the upper lakes. The ship, the Griffon, was built 
by La Salle, but was wrecked on her first voyage. Frontenac supported 
La Salle's trading enterprise and thus incurred the opposition of the 
Quebec traders, whose profits were affected. He also incurred the 
hostility of the Jesuits, whose power by this time was overwhelming. 
Combining their efforts, his enemies secured his removal in 1682. His 
successors renewed the war with the Iroquois, who were thus thrown 
back on the English for support. 

By this time the French were aware of the vast possibilities of the 
interior parts of North America. Of the three river valleys that 

conduct thither they held two, the St. Lawrence and the 
D "*^^ . Mississippi, and it seemed necessary to seize the other, 
Hudson. ^^^ Hudson, ere it was able to defy them. To do so 

would cut the English settlements in twain and go far 
toward expelling English authority from the continent. Moreover, 
the opportunity to realize these plans seemed to come when in 1689 
France began war with England on account of the overthrow of 
James II by William of Orange. 

Her first care was to send Frontenac back to Canada as governor, 
and he immediately turned his attention to winning over the Iroquois. 

In order to impress them with French prowess he sent 
King Wii- three expeditions against the English frontier. February 
1600-1607.' 9' 1690, a force of Frenchmen and Indians surprised 

Schenectady, near Albany, slew 60 whites and led away 
27 captives. The second force attacked and destroyed the village 
of Salmon Falls, New Hampshire, and the third took Fort Loyal, 

where Portland, Maine, now stands. Each of these 
R^ds*°^*^ ^ affairs was conducted with much cruelty, and cries for 

vengeance arose from all the northern colonies. A 
congress of delegates from Massachusetts, Connecticut, Plymouth, 
and New York convened in May, 1690, and planned a retaliatory 
expedition to take Quebec. It was agreed that New York and Connec- 
ticut should raise an army and attack Montreal by way of Lake 


Champlain. Massachusetts was asked to cooperate by sending a 

naval force against Quebec. To this request her delegates would 

not positively agree. At that moment a fleet of her 

armed merchantmen, under the command of Sir William A Counter- 

. ... • stroke 

Phips, was engaged in an expedition against Port Royal, m pjanned. 

Acadia, a nest from which had gone forth many privateers. 

Soon Phips appeared in Boston laden with booty and reporting that 

Port Royal had been subdued and its inhabitants forced 

to take oaths of loyalty to William and Mary. So great port^^oyai 

was the enthusiasm that the colony decided to send a 

strong force against Quebec, believing that a bold stroke would end 

the French peril in that quarter once for all. 

While Massachusetts made ready her attack, the army of the other 
colonies had assembled and set out for Montreal. Dissension appeared, 
smallpox was discovered, the Iroquois allies did not keep 
their promises, and the expedition was abandoned at jifg Counter- 
Lake Champlain. After many delays Phips started for stroke. 
Quebec August 9, 1690. He had no pilot who knew the 
St. Lawrence, and as he groped his way through its course news of his 
movements was carried to Frontenac, who barely had time to collect 
his forces at Quebec, most of them having been drawn off to Montreal 
to meet the expected attack there. The Massachusetts men landed 
1200 strong and laid siege to the town. Their commander lacked the 
ability of his opponent, and soon disease and discouragement reigned 
in the army. Cold weather now approached, and it was decided 
to return to Boston. Had Phips acted vigorously at first, it is prob- 
able that the town would have been taken. The expedition cost the 
colony dearly both in money and in the men who died from disease. 

The war now waged was called in the colonies "King William's 
War." It lasted until 1697, when peace came with the Treaty of 
Ryswick between France and England. No large expedi- 
tion marked the further course of the struggle on either ^^^^^ 
side in America, but Indian forays were continuous. 
The New England borders, from Northampton to Pemaquid, suffered 
severely. In 1697 Haverhill was captured with scenes of bloodshed. 
One of the captives was Hannah Dustin. Led away toward Canada, 
she watched her opportunity, slew her captors, and escaped to her 
friends. Her achievement was long a source of inspiration to the 
frontier women of America. During this war the Iroquois suffered 
severely at the hands of the French. Two strong expeditions were 
sent against them by Frontenac, and it was reported by the French 
that their fighting men were reduced to half their former 
number. In 1694 they were willing to make peace with ^j^g •^j^j. 
France, but Frontenac refused unless the Indian allies of 
the French were included, — terms the Iroquois would not accept. 
In maintaining the good will of these savages the services of Peter 


Schuyler, of Albany, were most valuable to the English. The treaty 
of peace left affairs as they were at the beginning of the war. 

In 1 701 began the War of the Spanish Succession, whose American 
phase was called "Queen Anne's War." During the interval of peace 

the French had made a treaty with the Iroquois. A 
?"^^° w further peaceful influence was the conversion of a large 
1701-1713. ' portion of the Mohawks and their removal to the vicinity 

of Montreal. Thus Vaudreuil, governor of Canada, was 
able for several years to preserve friendship with this powerful con- 
federacy, and in consequence the New York border did not suffer 
in Queen Anne's War as formerly. It was otherwise with New 
England. The Abenakis, who lived on this frontier, were under the 
influence of the missionaries, and faithful to France. The governor 
used them to harass the settlements, and their captives were turned 
over to the missionaries for conversion to Catholicism. 

Every portion of this frontier suffered, but the severest blow was 
at Deerfield, February, 1704. Fifty Canadians and two hundred 

Indians fell on the place on a bitterly cold night, scaled 
Rafded ^^^ palisade before they could be discovered, and killed 

the inhabitants from house to house. Fifty-three whites 
perished during the night and one hundred and eleven were carried 
away through the frozen forests, among them Rev. John Williams 
and his family. Seventeen of the prisoners were killed on the march 
because they could not keep up with their captors, and others died 
of hunger. Mrs. Williams died in the former way, but the husband 
and children reached Canada safely. After futile efforts to force him 
to conversion he was purchased by the governor from his Indian 
master, and in later years he and the survivors were ransomed by their 
friends in New England. Many "New England Captives" refused 
to return when the opportunity offered. Of this class was Eunice 
Williams, daughter of the Deerfield minister. Converted to Ca- 
tholicism and married to an Indian husband, she clung to her new 
home and religion. 

England was by this time convinced of the importance of taking 
Canada, and made plans for a joint English and colonial expedition 

for that purpose. In 17 10 a fleet appeared in Boston, 
Take °^^ where it was joined by a body of colonial troops and suc- 
ceeded in taking Port Royal, whose name was changed to 
Annapolis. From that time Acadia was a British possession. In 
1711a still larger fleet appeared, commanded by Admiral Sir Hovenden 

Walker. On board was an army under John Hill, 
Failure of brother of Queen Anne's favorite, Mrs. Masham. This 
den Walker. foi"ce, after receiving recruits in Boston, numbered 

12,000 men, and should have taken Quebec with ease. 
But the admiral would not trust his French pilots, and ran on 
the rocks near the mouth of the St. Lawrence, with a loss of ten 


ships and 900 men. With this he lost heart and abandoned the 

In this war Spain was alUed with France, and for that reason war be- 
gan between her colonies and South Carolina. The initiative was with 
the Spaniards of Florida, who in 1 702 armed a large number 
of Indians for a hostile movement. Before they could p°"*!^ 
attack they were severely defeated by a body of Indians ^^^ Florida, 
raised by the South Carolinians, who then attacked 
St. Augustine, burned the town, but failed to capture the fort held by 
a Spanish garrison. Next year they raided the Florida plantations, 
doing much damage. In 1706 the Spaniards retaliated with a large 
French and Spanish fleet and a strong landing party sent out from 
Havana to take Charleston. It met a stout resistance from Governor 
Nathaniel Johnson and the colonial army. An attempt to land was 
beaten back and the invading fleet was attacked so vigorously by a 
flotilla of Carolina craft that it departed. A French man-of-war 
which anchored in a neighboring bay was surrounded and taken. 
In this spirited defense of their chief city the South Carolinians 
showed great courage, and it is likely that with the aid of a 
small English force they could have destroyed Spanish power 
in Florida. 

By this time England and France, with their allies, were tired of 
the war, and peace was made at Utrecht, 1713. As to America, the 
terms were : (i) England was to have Acadia, whose 
boundaries, however, were not defined ; (2) the Iroquois ^/^u Jecht^ 
were acknowledged as English subjects, but their boun- ^^^^ 
daries also were not defined; (3) Newfoundland was 
ceded to England, but the French might dry fish on a part of the coast ; 
and (4) the Hudson Bay region was to be English territory. 
This was the first important treaty in which the affairs of 
English America figured, and Professor Channing well says it 
may be regarded as the beginning of the diplomatic history of 
the United States. 

Acadia now became the royal province of Nova Scotia. Its posses- 
sion by the British meant much for the New England fisheries. The 
Hudson Bay clause, also, had special significance. Fifty 
years earlier Groseillier and Radisson, two Frenchmen The Hud- 
excluded from the fur trade by the system of monopolies company, 
in existence in Canada, learned that the Canadian north- 
west could be approached from the great bay of the north. After 
futile efforts to get financial support in Boston and Paris, they got 
help from a group of English nobles, among them Prince Rupert, 
cousin of the king. The result was a charter for the Hudson Bay 
Company, 1670. Thus was founded the great commercial organi- 
sation which has worked so mightily to extend British influence in 
the northern parts of the continent. It received its guarantee of 


territorial development in the Treaty of Utrecht. Still another feature 
of this treaty which was important to the colonies was the clause 

known as the "Assiento," by which English merchants 
" A^ssiento " ^^^ ^°^ thirty years the monopoly of the slave trade in 

Spanish America. Out of the lirm development of 
this trade English colonial slavery as well as colonial trade was to 
get an added impetus. 

To make good the loss of Port Royal, France now built a strong 
fortress on Cape Breton Island, calling it Louisburg. This evident 

determination to perpetuate her influence in that region 
^°s convinced the English authorities that further trouble 

WaT^i7l'i~ ^^^ ^^ ^^ expected on the frontier. The expectation 
1748. was realized when the War of the Austrian Succession 

began in 1744. In this struggle England and France 
were again on opposite sides, and hostilities at once began in America, 
where the conflict is known as "King George's War." It was hardly 
begun before Governor Shirley, of Massachusetts, and his associates 

were laying plans to take Louisburg. Indeed, they 

could hardly do otherwise ; for the place harbored so many 
privateers that New England fishermen and traders were reduced to 
direst distress. 

For this expedition New England raised 4000 men who sailed from 
Boston on March 24, 1745, under the command of William Pepperell, 

a rich merchant of Kittery, Maine. He found Louisburg 
Louisburg insufhciently garrisoned and supplied, and a British 

fleet arriving at that time in the Gulf of Newfoundland 
served to keep French reenforcements from the beleaguered fort. 
After forty days of siege Pepperell received the surrender of the 
stronghold. The news of this colonial achievement caused an out- 
break of surprise and joy in England, and for his part in it the com- 
mander was made a baronet. In France it caused bewilderment 
and dismay. Two expeditions were sent to retake Louisburg, but 
the first, 1746, returned on account of storms and the death of the 
commander, and the second, 1747, was driven back by a British 
fleet. In 1746 Shirley organized a strong land expedition against 
Canada, but it was disbanded by the English authorities, who needed 
elsewhere the regulars Shirley expected to use. In 1748 the war 

ended in the Treaty of Ak-la-Chapelle. Louisburg 
th^^w^ ° was unwisely restored to France, and an attempt was 

made to soothe New England's disappointment by a 
donation of money which partly repaid her expenses in the war. 


The Last Conflict between the English and the French in 

North America 

No one who knew the conditions in America believed that the 
Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle settled the differences between England 
and France. In fact, every year brought the settlements 
of the two powers closer together, and in doing so increased French and 
the probability of war. A series of posts from the upper rheQ^^^ 
Mississippi to the lakes through the Wabash valley valley, 
marked a continuous line of travel ; and in 1749, the year 
after the treaty was signed, the governor of Canada sent Celoron 
de Bienville with 214 white men and a force of Indians to take posses- 
sion of the Ohio valley. In token of their pretensions they planted 
leaden plates from Lake Chautauqua down the Alleghany and the 
Ohio and up the Great Miami, including a portion of the undisputed 
territory of the Iroquois. On the journey they met several bands 
of English traders, whom they ordered out of the country. In the 
same year several Virginians, among them Lawrence and Augustine 
Washington, brothers of the future president of the republic, secured 
a royal grant for 200,000 acres of land south of the Ohio and between 
the Monongahela and Kanawha. About the same time a still 
larger tract was secured by the Loyal Land Company to be located 
beyond the mountains, probably in Tennessee or Kentucky. These 
two movements, French and English, brought the two rival nations 
into close proximity in a region which each regarded as the key to 
the control of the interior. A clash could hardly be avoided. 

If additional motive was necessary, it was to be found in Indian 

relations in the lower part of the great valley. In the southern 

Appalachians lived the Cherokees, a strong and progressive 

nation. From the seventeenth century the Virginia Conflicting 
• ■ • . . Int6r6sts in 

traders \isited it, but with the settlement of Carolina ^^^^ South. 

its rich trade was absorbed by the merchants of Charleston. 
When Georgia was settled Augusta became a strong rival of Charleston. 
This shifting of the Cherokee trade from place to place has nothing 
to do with the conflict for the Mississippi valley, but it well shows 
the progress of industrial distribution. In 1730 the English made 
a treaty with the Cherokees, taking them under British protection. 
South of them were the Creeks, another powerful nation, and west- 
ward on the Mississippi the Chickasaws and Choctaws. With 
these latter tribes the English had traded also, but the Spaniards 
disputed with them the trade of the Creeks, and after the settlement 
of Biloxi, New Orleans, and Mobile (17 10) the French became com- 
petitors for it. They made treaties with the three last-mentioned 
nations, and what was the horror of the Englishmen to learn that 
active efforts were being made to win the Cherokees. If France 


could establish a firm influence over these western tribes, it was 
clear she would be in a strong position to exclude any rival power 
not only from the western trade but from pretensions at sovereignty 
as well. 

But let us return to events in the Ohio valley. Four years after 
Bienville's journey, i.e. in 1753, Duquesne, the governor of Canada, 

sent 1000 men to the same region. They constructed 
ftheOhfo ^ YOSid thirteen miles long from Presque Isle, now Erie, 

to the Riviere aux Boeufs, tributary of the Allegheny, 
where they built Fort Le Boeuf, and about forty miles southward 
they built Fort Machault on the Allegheny. Whither this tended 
v/as easy to see, and Governor Dinwiddle, of Virginia, sent a protest 
by the hands of George Washington, a young man of twenty-one 
years whose character had already won the confidence of all who 
knew him. The region occupied, so said the protest, was in Virginia, 
and the governor of Canada was told to vacate it. The commandant 
at Fort de Boeuf forwarded the letter to Governor Duquesne, and 
Washington returned by a most difficult journey to Virginia. On the 
way he met a party going into the wilderness to build a trading fort 
at the junction of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers, a critical 
point which the French advance had not yet reached. They had 
hardly accomplished their purpose when a large French force descended 
the Allegheny in canoes, took the fort, and enlarged and strengthened 
it, changing the name to Fort Duquesne. This happened in April, 


At Will's Creek (Cumberland, Md.) the expelled English garrison 
met Washington, now lieutenant colonel, whom Governor Dinwiddle 
had sent forward with 300 men to strengthen the garrison 
Success?uJ^ at the forks of the Ohio. The task assigned was beyond 
his present strength, but Washington determined to go 
forward and open and hold a road by which a larger party could drive 
out the French. With great difificulty he cut a road across the moun- 
tains, and came late in May to Great Meadows, fifty miles from 
Will's Creek. Learning from friendly Indians that a French detach- 
ment had marched to meet him, he surprised and defeated it. May 28. 
The French explained afterwards that the detachment, whose leader, 
Jumonville, was killed, merely came to warn the English out of the 
country. The affair was followed by a movement in force against 
the colonial army. Washington built a rude work. Fort Necessity, 
and met the attack as well as he could, hoping to hold out until reen- 
forcements arrived. His efforts were futile, and July 4 he sur- 
rendered the place, marching out with the honors of war. 

The war which was thus begun had been foreseen by the British 
government, who in 1753 ordered the governors of certain colonies 
to hold a conference with the Iroquois and devise a plan of com- 
mon defense. Accordingly the Albany congress met June 19, 1754, 


with delegates present from New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode 
Island, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. 
Washington was then facing defeat beyond the Allegha- 
nies, and the congress took up the large phases of the ^ e Albany 
situation. To meet the crisis, united action was demanded, j^g^^ 
and the meeting adopted a plan of union furnished by 
Benjamin Franklin, one of the delegates, who, however, acted for a 
committee appointed to consider the subject. It provided for a federal 
council of delegates from each colony, to meet annually, and to have 
among other federal powers the right to lay taxes, enact laws, raise 
armies, appoint officials, and manage Indian affairs. In the general 
state of colonial jealousy then existing it was impossible that the 
colonies should accept a scheme which took from them so much of 
their own authority. The plan was rejected by the assemblies, to 
which it was referred, and it found little favor in England. Franklin 
justly said it had too much self-government to please the king and 
too much prerogative to please the assemblies. 

Meanwhile, an elaborate attack on Canada was prepared in England, 
although war with France was not yet declared. While a fleet under 
Boscawen lurked around the mouth of the St. Lawrence 
to intercept ships taking troops to Quebec, colonial The French 
expeditions were to seize the frontier posts. Boscawen ^^ Indian 
allowed the prize to slip through his fingers, and of the Boscawen's 
other attempts only that of Braddock demands our Orders, 
attention. This brave but headstrong officer, with two 
British regiments, arrived in the Potomac in March, 1755, and prepared 
to move from Will's Creek on Fort Duquesne. He was joined by 
450 Virginia militia under Washington, the entire army 
being thus about 2000 strong. Widening and extending Exoedition 
Washington's road, his advance reached Turtle Creek, 
eight miles from Duquesne, on July 9. As the troops marched 
through an opening in the forest they encountered a heavy fire from 
each side of the road. The Virginians leaped into the bushes and 
fired from behind whatever cover they found. Braddock, coming 
up, swore at them loudly, and when some of his regulars sought to 
fight like the Virginians, he beat them back into the ranks. In close 
formation in the middle of a glade they fired into the forest whence 
came the enemy's fire, and in doing so killed some of the militia. On 
the other hand, they made an excellent target for the foe, and fell 
rapidly. Braddock rode everywhere with the greatest coolness, but 
his efforts were unavailing, and when he finally received a mortal 
wound he had just given the order to retreat. Washington, who had 
been in the thickest of the fight, took command and led the men 
to the rear. Of the 1200 men in the advance body 877 were killed 
or wounded. The attacking party, led by Beaujeu, who was killed 
in the fight, contained no more than 254 whites and 600 Indians, 


and the latter went home with their booty after the battle. At 
Duquesne all was confusion, and the iioo men still left in the English 
army might have taken the place. But Dunbar, who now took com- 
mand, fled to Philadelphia, burning his wagons and destroying a large 
quantity of powder. This disaster was followed by Indian outrages, 
Braddock's road making such operations easy to the savages. 

While Braddock played his part in western Pennsylvania, fighting 
also occurred in New York. William Johnson marched with about 
3000 men to take the position at Crown Point, corn- 
New York* rnanding the road from Lake George to Lake Champlain. 
The French sent Dieskau with an equal force to oppose 
him. At Lake George, September 8, the French advance attacked 
a part of Johnson's force and was beaten off after a hot engagement. 
Johnson gained much credit and was made a baronet for his part in 
the battle, although he was wounded early in the day and the com- 
mand was taken by Phineas Lyman, of Connecticut, a better soldier. 
But Johnson's victory was the only success of the year, and the govern- 
ment felt constrained to give it prominence. An expedition by which 
Governor Shirley attempted to take Fort Niagara failed completely, 
partly because Braddock's defeat prevented an expected cooperation, 
and partly because it was impossible to bring up supplies to support 
a large army on the western border of New York. 

In the same year occurred the removal of the Acadians. The 
governor of Nova Scotia was alarmed at their attitude, since they 
insisted on being "neutrals" in the impending war and 
^®™°^^^ refused to take an unconditional oath of allegiance to 
Acadians. England. He called on Governor Shirley, of Massachu- 
setts, who sent 2000 volunteers, with whose aid Fort 
Beausejour was taken. Then it was decided to remove the French 
Acadians forcibly and distribute them among the colonies to the south- 
ward. The decision was carried out with great suffering. Many 
of the exiles escaped from their new homes, some going to Louisiana, 
others to Canada, and others returning to Nova Scotia. The sad 
tragedy has received its most popular rendering in Longfellow's 
"Evangeline." The attitude of the Acadians toward the British 
government was reprehensible, but not enough so to justify the 
punishment they received. 

In 1756 began the Seven Years' War in Europe, England joining 
Prussia against France and Austria. This was two years after fighting 
had begun in America, where the struggle is known as 
^/th'^'s"^ the French and Indian War. The British ministry was 
Years' War!* ^^^1 at first by Newcastle, who thought only of patronage 
and peculation, and their conduct of the war was weak. 
A new ministry created in 1756 could do little more, although 
Pitt was in it in a secondary position. Finally there was such a 
popular demand for this firm and patriotic leader that in 1757 he was 


given full control of the war policy, while Newcastle, one of the 
Pelhams, maintained the control of home affairs. Frederick the Great 
said, when he heard of the appointment:' "England has long been 
in labor, and at last she'has brought forth a man." 

Meanwhile, the years 1756 and 1757 were full of misfortunes in 
America, where Loudon, a weak product of the Pelham regime, com- 
manded. In 1756 Oswego was taken, and in 1757 an 
expedition against Louisburg failed, while a French army f'g6^*^^^°* 
under Montcalm took Fort William Henry at the j^^^^ 
southern end of Lake George, and perhaps only the with- 
drawal of his Indian allies saved from capture Fort Edward, on the 
upper Hudson. Out of the discouragement consequent on these 
events the colonies were raised by the news that Pitt was in full power, 
and that arms, ammunition, and provisions would be furnished by the 
king for any troops the colonies would raise. The response was ex- 
cellent, and soon every colony north of the Potomac was filled with 
busy preparations for war. 

Four principal campaigns came out of this activity in America. 
The first was against Louisburg, now greatly strengthened and de- 
fended by 3000 regulars with twelve warships anchored in 
the harbor. Before the place appeared in the summer of capturedf 
1758 forty-one British men-of-war and 11,000 regulars 
with a small force of provincials. Jeffrey Amherst was in command, 
and one of his brigadiers was James Wolfe. In a severe bombardment 
the French fleet was burned, the walls of the fort were pierced, and the 
garrison was forced to surrender. In 1749 Halifax had been founded 
as a seat of English power on the northern coast, and in view of its 
development Louisburg ceased to be important. Lest it again fall 
into enemy hands it was demolished in 1760. 

The second campaign was made to take Fort Duquesne and relieve 
Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia from Indian raids. The task 
was assigned to General Forbes with 1200 Highlanders 
and nearly sooo militia from Pennsylvania, Maryland, ^^ 
Virginia, and North Carolina. The advance was slow, Taken. 
partly because the commander was ill and partly because 
he believed that the French Indians would become impatient and 
desert the force at Duquesne. As winter approached he heard that 
just this had happened. Hurrying forward with an advance guard 
of 2500 he found the fort deserted and its works blown up, November 
25, 1758. The French had fled. Three months earlier Colonel Brad- 
street had destroyed Fort Frontenac, commanding Lake Ontario. 
The fugitives from Forbes' vengeance were thus cut off from Canada 
and dispersed into the wilderness. From these two blows col- 
lapsed all that network of posts France established in the Ohio 
valley, and those which were on or south of the western lakes were 
left mostly to their own resources. The fort at the forks of the 


Ohio was now named Fort Pitt, in honor of the minister who made 
its capture possible. 

The year 1758 thus saw the Canadian frontier defenses carried at 
the two extremes, Louisburg and Duquesne. An attack made on 

its center, along the Hudson-Lake-Champlain line of 
b '^Failure 3-pproach, was a failure. For the command Abercromby, 

a political favorite, was selected against the wishes of 
Pitt ; but it was hoped that his inefhciency would be overbalanced 
by his second in command, George Howe, as capable and popular a 
soldier as then served the king. Abercromby gathered his forces, 
15,000 strong, at Lake George, and July 4, 1758, advanced against 
Ticonderoga. Next day an attempted ambuscade was beaten off, 
but with the loss of Howe's life. From this time things went badly. 
July 8, the British general fought a long and hard battle under the 
walls of the fort, and at the end withdrew with a loss of 1944. He had 
been repulsed by a force one fourth as large as his own, and yet he 
fled rapidly to his boats. The demoralization of his army was only 
relieved by Bradstreet's capture of Frontenac a few weeks later. 

At this point let us consider affairs in Canada, where three men 
were to mar or make the country's fortune. In 1756 the Marquis 

de Montcalm, an excellent soldier and a cultured gentle- 
DifficuUies^ man, arrived in Quebec with a commission to command 

all the forces in Canada. His coming disappointed Vau- 
dreuil, the governor, who did not relish a diminution of his own author- 
ity. Over his head scowled the dark face of Bigot, intendant and 
head of finances. Convinced that neither the irresolute governor nor 
the brave general could save Canada from the British, he hastened 
the course of his peculations in the conviction that the approaching 
cataclysm would destroy the evidences of guilt. He seems to have 
induced the governor to share the spoils, and the consequent corruption 
in civil affairs was a source of embarrassment to the honest and pa- 
triotic Montcalm. It cut off the supplies needed for the army, increased 
the expenses of the war, and made it difficult to get recruits. All the 
while the jealous governor did not cease to try to discredit the general 
with the authorities at home. Montcalm, disgusted with the situation, 
was on the point of resigning when Forts Duquesne and Frontenac were 
lost and he then felt that honor demanded that he stay in Canada. 
His army at the time it was largest consisted of 4000 French and 
2500 Canadian regulars, with 5000 colonial militia. Besides these, all 
able-bodied men in New France might be called into service when 
needed. The Indian allies rarely mustered more than 1000. 

In 1759 Pitt sent out two strong expeditions. Wolfe, 

Operations -yyith 9000 men and a powerful fleet was to attack Quebec 

1759- ^y ^^^ ^^- Lawrence, and Amherst, with 11,000, was to 

move on the same place by way of Lake Champlain. 

Supporting Amherst, 5000 men under Colonel Prideaux were sent 


against Fort Niagara. This post was easily taken, and Oswego was 
rebuilt, reestablishing complete English control of Lake Ontario. 
Amherst's expedition reached Lake George in June, whereupon the 
French abandoned Ticonderoga and Crown Point. Following their 
retreat northward he found them strongly placed at Isle aux Noix, com- 
manding the entrance of the Richelieu, and was not able to take the 
position on account of the approach of winter. On Wolfe, therefore, 
fell the burden of the attack on Quebec. For that work his army was 
designed to be strong enough for complete success even if it acted inde- 
pendently. France, now engaged on every side in Europe, had no 
troops available for Canada. Montcalm, harassed by enemies at his 
own side, was forced to prepare for the impending conflict with no 
other outside assistance than 500 fresh troops and a small supply 
of provisions. Advised of the coming of Wolfe, he gathered at Quebec 
all the men available, 15,000 white men and 1000 Indians, and held 
himself ready for the onslaught. 

The British expedition was before Quebec by June 26. Before him 
Wolfe saw a rocky peninsula, at the end of which was the town. The 
crest of the bluff was well fortified, and across the neck of 
land above the town a strong line of intrenchments was ^|^® 
drawn. To assault the place from the water front or in Quebec. 
the rear seemed futile. In fact, it was a prevalent opin- 
ion that Quebec was impregnable, and to starve it into submission was 
difficult, because winter operations were impossible. Wolfe realized 
these disadvantages, but landed his many cannon on points of vantage 
and opened a bombardment. At the end of two months the buildings 
in the town had been badly damaged, but the French hold was 
not relaxed. The delay, however, discouraged the provincial troops, 
many of whom, went home. The approach of winter warned the 
British that they must complete their work or withdraw, and Wolfe 
decided to attack the town from the high ground behind it. On the 
night of September 12, he managed to find a way to the 
Plains of Abraham, a mile and a half from Quebec, and by , Abraham 
the morning of the 13th 4500 troops were drawn up ready 
to assault the defenses. Montcalm hurried forward with a force of 
about ecjual size. Thinking only a small portion of Wolfe's men con- 
fronted him, he drew up his troops in line of battle in order to drive 
the British into the river. Had he retired into his own lines he might 
have held out until the November frosts forced the British to with- 
draw. The battle that followed was hard volley against hard volley, 
and lasted only a few minutes. Some of the Frenchmen were recruits 
whose wavering threw the rest into confusion, and then the whole line 
broke for the cover of the fortifications, followed by the English, whose 
energy made the pursuit a complete victory. At the moment the flight 
began, both Wolfe and Montcalm fell, mortally wounded. Governor 
Vaudreuil, in consternation, withdrew hastily to Montreal, and four 


days later, September 17, the garrison he left behind surrendered to 
the British. 

When winter began, Quebec was occupied by 7000 British troops 
under General Murray, illy prepared to face the bitter cold. Hardship 

and illness reduced this force by the end of April to 3000 
H Id ^*^ effectives. Down on them now came Levis, the successor 

of Montcalm, who had collected the fragments of French 
military power to the number of 12,000. April 28 Murray gave battle 
on the Plains of Abraham and was forced back into his lines with a loss 
of a third of his force engaged. His position seemed desperate when 
the arrival of British frigates with supplies restored hope and enabled 
him to drive off Levis, who now gave his attention to the defense of 
Montreal, the last French stronghold in Canada. 

His utmost efforts in this respect were soon demanded, for three 
expeditions were being prepared to overwhelm him. One under 

Amherst was to assemble at Oswego and proceed down 

Montreal Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence, another under Havi- 


j_5o_ ' land was to advance by way of Lake Champlain, and a 

third was to be led by Murray up the St. Lawrence from 
Quebec. The three expeditions were to arrive at Montreal at the 
same time, and if the plans did not miscarry could be expected to put 
an end to French rule in New France. The story of American opera- 
tions against Canada is full of the failure of cooperation where support- 
ing movements had been proposed, but for once we come to the ex- 
ception. August 24, 1760, Murray was eighteen miles below Montreal, 
and took such a strong position that he was safe against an attack in 
detail. September 6 both Haviland and Amherst arrived before the 
town, and with the aid of Murray's ships the investment was completed. 
The defenses, good enough against the Indians, were not proof against 
British cannon; the garrison was only 2500 men, for many of the 
Canadians had gone home on being promised immunity by the British ; 
and the provisions would suffice for only fifteen days. Under these 
conditions the French hastened the inevitable by surrendering the 
place and giving parole not to fight again during the war. Thus was 
lowered the French flag in Canada September 8, 1760. It is gratifying 
to add that in Paris, whither they were allowed to go, Vaudreuil, 
Bigot, and their chief tools were arrested and tried for malfeasance in 
office. The governor was acquitted for lack of proof, but the false 
intendant was fined 1,500,000 francs, his ill-gotten pelf confiscated, 
and he himself exiled for life. 

The struggle thus far had not affected Louisiana, but it 
^P^^°" now remains to be seen how that too was drawn into the 
the War. vortex of ruin which affected all French colonies. Spain 

saw with alarm the progress of British power in America 
and on the sea, and in 1761 pledged herself in the celebrated Family 
Compact to treat French enemies as her own enemies. As a consequence, 


England declared war on her January 4, 1762, and sent a strong expedi- 
tion against Cuba. August 13 Havana was taken with booty worth 
$15,000,000; a sum which, however, did not repay the frightful loss 
of lives from disease in the British army. September i of this year a 
British force took the Philippine Islands, but gave them up when 
promised a ransom. Impressed by these experiences, Spain was soon 
willing to make peace. France, utterly exhausted, was equally ready, 
and the result was the Treaty of Paris, February 10, 1763. 

Before it was signed there was much discussion of terms. England 
boldly demanded Florida, much to the dismay of Spain, who wished to 
keep the entrance of the Gulf. Then France, out of con- 
sideration for Spain, whom she had persuaded to enter the p^^?*^ ° 
war, offered England all of Louisiana west of the Missis- ^^^^ ' 
sippi if she would forego the demand for Florida. But Eng- 
land was obdurate ; and France gave Louisiana to Spain to recoup her 
for the loss of the peninsular province. The arrangement was made 
secretly between the two powers concerned, and was not generally 
known until long after the Treaty of Paris was signed. France had 
been spending on Louisiana 300,000 livres a year without a sou in 
return, and her apparent generosity accorded well with her financial 
necessities. With Canada and India gone, and her fleet destroyed, 
Louisiana could not be of value to her. 

The terms of the general treaty were as follows: Canada, Nova 
Scotia, Cape Breton, and all the interior east of the Mississippi, ex- 
cept the so-called Isle d'Orleans near its mouth, were 
ceded to the British ; the West Indian islands of Tobago, the™reaty. 
Dominica, Granada, and St. Vincent also were ceded to 
the EngHsh, but Martinique and Guadeloupe, which had been con- 
quered, were left to France. England received Florida and gave up 
Cuba ; France lost all her East Indian colonies but Pondicherry and 
Chandernagore ; and France was to retain the right to dry fish on the 
north and west coasts of Newfoundland, with two small islands off the 
shore as a shelter for her fishermen. 

Thus France made her exit from North America, where she had lost 
her day as a colonizing power. One cannot but admire the bravery 
with which she attempted large tasks and the generosity 
with which she succored infant settlements. Her failure ^^ France. 
was inherent in her own life. Without a large manufactur- 
ing interest she was not able to build up a colonial market for her mer- 
chandise ; and without a surplus population there was little demand 
for colonies to improve the condition of her farming class. As Spain 
tried to support colonial development on the mining industry so France 
wished to make it depend on the fur trade, whose very existence 
demanded that agriculture should not advance into the continent. 
Between the farmsteads of the English and the hunting ranges of the 
interior the clash was inevitable and the issue certain. If Pitt had 


not, by his foresight and energy, completed the French expulsion in 

1760, the colonies themselves must have done it at no very distant date. 

It is said, but on doubtful authority, that Choiseul, the French 

minister who made the Treaty of Paris, remarked that England would 

do well to leave Canada to France in order that the danger 
Was the ^f ^ French and Indian attack might keep the English 
English colonies dependent on the mother country. It is certain 

Wise? that the idea was often mentioned in 1762. It was so 

strongly urged by the English interests in the West Indies 
in order to induce the government to retain all the French islands 
there, that Franklin wrote a pamphlet to show that it was badly 
founded. The colonies, he said, were so divided by mutual distrust . 
and varying interests that they would never unite against England. 
Such might have been the case for many years had not a headstrong 
king forced them to a union in defense of rights they held dearer than 
any of the interests which had caused their dissensions. 

Two Indian wars came as an aftermath of the struggle against 
France. After the outbreaks of 1711-1716, the Cherokees remained at 

peace with the English ; but the efforts of the French had 
The Chero- ^^g influence in arousing their suspicions. A party went 
Ho^s^tmue's! rather unwillingly with Forbes against Fort Duquesne, 

1759, and some of them deserted. A group of the deserters 
on their return killed twenty-two whites in North Carolina, 
and another band stole a number of horses. The whites retaliated 
by killing the Indians, whereupon the Indians fell on the settlements 
and slew whom they found. Governor Lyttleton of South Carolina 
now called out troops and marched to the Indian country with 1500 
poorly equipped soldiers. Before he started he was joined by thirty 
Cherokee chiefs who said they were come to make peace. They had 
been promised personal immunity, but Lyttleton forced them to go 
with him to the frontier, and when the murderers of the whites were 
not delivered up by the tribes, he detained as hostages these envoys 
of peace, who had trusted his promise. Although he made a new treaty, 
he was hardly back in Charleston before depredations were resumed. 
The commandant of the frontier fort in which the hostages were de- 
tained was lured out of the gate on pretense of a parley and murdered, 
and the garrison, angered by this cruelty, slew the hostages. 

The war now became general. Lyttleton was no longer governor, 
but Bull, acting in his place, sent forward, 1760, Colonel Montgomery 

with 1650 men, three-fourths of whom were regulars who 
The Cam- had opportunely arrived at Charleston. They burned the 
r6^o°and lower Cherokee towns and killed or captured more than a 
1761.*" hundred persons, but were fiercely engaged in an attempt to 

cross the mountains and fall back to the seaboard, whence 
the regulars returned to New York to take part in the campaign 
against Montreal. Their departure encouraged the Indians and sealed 


the fate of Fort London. The post had been umnsely built in an ex- 
posed position beyond the Alleghanies, and its garrison of 200 men 
could not be relieved. Hunger at last overcame them and they sur- 
rendered on condition that they should return home in safety. But 
the Indians pursued them, slew twenty-six, and took the others pris- 
oners. By 1 761 troops could be spared from the north, and General 
Amherst sent Colonel Grant with 1200 Highlanders to complete the 
pacification of the Indian country. Grant, joined by militia and 
friendly Indians until his army numbered 2600, won a costly victory 
over the Cherokees in June, and then proceeded to destroy their towns 
and the growing crops. This was a heavy blow, and the chiefs sued for 
peace. The treaty that followed did not remove Cherokee resent- 
ment, as their support of the British showed in the war of the Revolu- 
tion. In the war of 1760 and 1761 both North Carolina and Virginia 
raised troops to protect their borders; but the work of vengeance 
which forced the Cherokees to make peace was done by the regulars, 
marching from Charleston and aided by the South Carolina militia. 

The second conflict with the Indians was the Pontiac War. The 
Indians of the Northwest recognized their doom when the British 
seized and held the French posts, and to save themselves 
formed a confederacy 'under Pontiac, a capable and am- ^"/^^g, 
bilious warrior of the Ottowas. Emissaries of France told ^.^^^ 
them that the French would return and subdue the British 
garrisons, and this gave the red men courage to strike while the new 
lords of the country were weak. The confederacy was well organized, 
each tribe promising to fall on and destroy the post nearest to it. 
The attack was made in May, 1763, and the result was that ten posts 
from Bedford, Pennsylvania, to Michilimackinac, at the entrance of 
Lake ^lichigan, fell to the savages, most of them being entered through 
treachery, and the garrisons murdered. Detroit and Fort Pitt, however, 
were warned and held out. The former received supplies _, . 
by v.-ater and delied its foe, though Pontiac himself led -^^^ ^^ 
the force which invested its land approaches. The latter 
was saved by Colonel Bouquet. This officer had seen seven years' 
serxace against the Indians and knew well how to fight them. He 
was in Philadelphia when the trouble began, and was ordered to re- 
lieve Fort Pitt with 500 Highlanders. ISIoving rapidly, he approached 
the scene of Braddock's defeat on August 5. Here he was surrounded 
by Indians at Busby Run, and fought fiercely until nightfall. Next 
morning the Indians resumed the battle, when by a feigned retreat 
Bouquet drew them into a heedless charge on his bag- ^^^ p. ^ ^ 
gage train, and turning at the proper moment drove them ^^ -^^j. 
off in great disorder. Four days later Fort Pitt was 
reached and relieved, but Bouquet must wait for reenforcements 
before he could march into the Indian country beyond it. In the 
following year, with 1500 men, he marched without opposition into 


what is now southeastern Ohio as far as the upper Muskingum and 
made treaties of peace with the Indians of that region, rescuing 200 
captured settlers. In a great council at Fort Niagara the Indians of 
the lake also made a treaty of peace in which they ceded to the 
English a strip four miles wide on each side of the Niagara river. 
Pontiac remained hostile until convinced that there was no hope of 
aid from the French, and in 1766 he, with other recalcitrants, made 
an unwilling submission at Oswego. Three years later he was slain in 
the forest near St. Louis by another Indian to whom an English trader 
had promised a barrel of rum. He was one of the ablest and most 
patriotic men of his race. 


Bancroft, History of the United States, 10 vols. (1834-1874), and Hildreth, 
History of the United States, 6 vols. (1849-1852), the older standard works on 
the colonial period and still important; but better and fresher are the volumes in 
The American Nation (A. B. Hart, Editor). On the period described in this chapter 
the volumes are Greene, Provincial America (1905), and Thwaites, France in 
America (1905). Channing, History of the United States, vol. II (1908), is e.xcel- 
lent, and great praise must be awarded to Avery, History of the United States and 
its People, 7 vols. (1904-). Winsor, Narrative and Critical History of America, 
8 vols. (1888-1889), has some very good chapters and very valuable references. 
Chalmers, Introduction to the History of tlie Revolt of tlic American Colonies, vol. I 
(1782). Vol. II (1845), ^ British work of much ability and generally regarded 
as the best contemporary general history of the colonies. The author was a king's 
officer in America, and after his return to England had access to important papers. 
Lodge, Short History of t lie English Colonies (ed. 1902) is a useful summary. 

The State Paper (Jffice, London, contains in manuscript a vast collection of 
letters from British Colonial officials, the most important source of our colonial 
history. Some of the states have published all or parts of this material, notably 
New York in Documents Relative to Colonial History, 14 vols, and index (1856- 
1883); New Jersey, in Documents Relating to Colonial History, 22 vols. (1880- 
1902); North Carolina in Colonial Records, 10 vols. (1886-1890). The British 
government is slowly publishing calendars with the title, Calendars of State Papers, 
Colonial Series: America and West Indies, 14 vols. (1860-1910). See also 
Force, Tracts and Other Papers, 4 vols. (1836-1846). 

For English history and policy during this period see : Lecky, England in the 
Eighteenth Century, 8 vols. (1878-1890), a judicious discussion; Cobbett, Parlia- 
mentary History of England, 36 vols. (1806-18 20) ; Egerton, Short History of British 
Colonial Policy (1897) ; Beer, Commercicl Policy of England towards the American 
Colonies (Columbia University Studies, III, 1893) ; Ibid., The Old Colonial System, 
i66o-iys4, 2 vols. (191 2) ; Ibid., British Colonial Policy, 1 754-1 765 (1907) ; Kellog, 
The American Colonial CJiarter (Am. Hist. Assn. Report, 1903, vol. I) ; and Lord, 
Industrial Experiments in the British Colonies of North America (Johns Hopkins 
Univ. Studies, Extra, 1898). 

For the development of institutions within the colonies the best work is Osgood, 
The American Colonies in the Seventeenth Century, 3 vols. (1904-1907). Good 
monographs are : Greene, The Provincial Governor in the English Colonies of North 
America (Harvard Hist. Studies, 1898) ; McKinley, Suffrage in the Tftirteen English 
Colonies (Univ. of Penn. Publications, series in History, 1905) ; and Miller, Legal 
Qualifications for Office (Am. Hist. Assn. Report, 1899). 

For the history of individual colonies the following are convienent and generally 
reliable : Palfrey, History of New England, 6 vols. (ed. 1890) ; Belknap, History of 


New Hampshire, 3 vols. (1784-1702); Barry, History of Massachusetts, 3 vols. 
(1858-1864) ; Arnold, History of Rhode Island, 2 vols. (ed. 1899) > Trumbull, 
History of Connecticut, 2 vols. (ed. i8q8) ; Fiske, Dutch and Quaker Colonies, 2 vols. 
(1899) ; Smith, History of New York (1757 and various later editions) ; Brodhead, 
History of New York, 2 vols. (1871) ; Mereness, Maryland as a Proprietary Province 
(1901); Fiske, OW Virginia and Her Neighbors, 2 vols. (1898); (Zsim\)hiA\, History 
of Virginia (i860); Ashe, History of North Carolina, vol. I (1908); McCrady, 
South Carolina under Proprietary Government (1897); Ihid., South Carolina under 
Royal Government (1899); and Jones, History of Georgia, 2 vols. (1883). 

On the French in Canada and their conflict with England the best American 
work is Parkman's standard series, France and England in the Nnv World, 12 vols., 
in many editions. The sub-titles are : Pioneers of France in the New World (1865) ; 
Jesuits in North America (1867) ; La Salle (1869) ; The Old Regime in Canada 
(1874); Frontenac and New France under Louis XIV. (1877); A Half-Century 
of Conflict, 2 vols. (1892); Montcalm and Wolfe, 2 vols. (1884); and The Con- 
spiracy of Pontine, 2 vols. (1851). Kingsford, History of Canada, 10 vols. (1887- 
1898), is the best English authority. It lacks Parkman's readable qualities, but is 
more concise. Corbett, England in the Seven Years' War, 2 vols. (1907), is excellent; 
Miles, History of Canada under the French Regime (1872), is a good short work, and 
VVinsor, From Cartier to Frontenac (1894), is valuable for its treatment of explora- 
tions. The French side of the war is presented in Faillon, Histoirc dc la Colonie 
Franqaise en Canada, 3 vols. (1865) ; Ferland, Cours d'histoire du Canada, 2 vols. 
(1861-1865); and Garneau, Histoire du Canada, 4 vols. (ed. 1882-1883). For 
the last struggle for Canada see : Wood, The Fight for Canada (1906); Bonnechose, 
Montcalm et la Canada Fran<;aise (1877) ; Martin, Montcalm et les Dernieres 
Annees de la Colonie Franqaise (ed. 1898). 

For early Louisiana see : Gayarre, Louisiana under French Dominion, 4 vols, 
(ed. 1904); Fortier, History of Louisiana, 6 vols. (1904); and Villiers du Terraget, 
Les Dernieres Annees de la Louisiane Franqaise (1903). 

For Independent Reading 

Fiske, Old Virginia and Her Neighbors, 2 vols. (1898) ; Madam Knight, Journal, 
1704-1705 (ed. 1865), relates chiefly to New England; Byrd, Writings of Colonel 
William Byrd of Westover in Virginia, Esq. (Bassett ed., 1901) ; Parkman, La Salle 
(1869) ; Ibid., Montcalm and Wolfe, 2 vols. (1884) ; Wright, Life of Wolfe (1864) ; 
Guenin, Montcalm (1898); Halsey, The Old New York Frontier, 2 vols. (1882); 
Grace King, New Orleans (1895). 


The Conditions of Settlement 

The desire to own land was the impelling cause of most of the early 
migration to America. Land was sold cheap, but the amount one 
person might buy was sometimes restricted. Free dis- 
?'^*"f*th tribution to settlers was usually made. Such allotments, 
Land. "importation rights," were as large in some colonies as 

fifty acres for each adult brought in, and they were allowed 
to male indented servants at the expiration of term of service. In the 
South, where money crops could be raised, the tendency was to own 
large farms ; for though the men of a community were usually poor at 
first, some would be thrifty and would eventually buy up and con- 
solidate into large holdings what had originally been a series of small 
farms. In New England agriculture was not as profitable as in the 
South, the soil was stony, the crops were not abundant, and the 
farms were small. Where the farms were large, population was widely 
dispersed, and where they were small it was denser. 

In all the colonies the settlers first took up the richest land, gener- 
ally along the rivers. This was advantageous because the rivers were 
the best means of transportation. In the southern col- 
onies, in which streams abounded, the land between them 
came slowly into settlement. This "ridge land" was the home of the 
poorer people, and the result was that roads came slowly into existence. 
When constrvicted, they were merely traced through the forest and 
became very difficult in wet weather. In the compact settlements of 
the North roads were early laid out, bridges were built, and inns were 
provided. But land traveling was not comfortable before the revolu- 
tion in any part of the colonies. 

In the royal colony land was granted by the governor and council 
in the name of the king, in a proprietary colony it was granted either 
directly or indirectly by the officers exercising a similar jur- 
E^^^ d^ isdiction. In New England the assembly created trustees 
Town." of a town with authority to grant the land to settlers. The 

trustees then met and selected the site for the meeting- 
house, reserving a portion of the land for a common, and assigning the 
lots around it. Land not granted was held by the town for common 
use, as grazing, the taking of firewood, and wood for necessary build- 
ings. From the compact nature of New England settlements the 



towns were relatively small, from ten to fifteen miles across, and most 
of the settlers were located conveniently near the meetinghouses. 
When the danger of Indian wars passed and the inhabitants became 
numerous at the "center" of the town, they began to form outlying 
villages on the better land in other parts of the town. Sometimes they 
moved to the frontier and established another town with the con- 
sent of the assembly. 

The county was the unit of organization in the South. It was from 
four to ten times as large as the New England town. The frontier 
county was usually a vast area with only a fringe of settle- 
ment on the edge nearest the older settlements. When I^^.. 
this fringe thickened a new county was set off still nearer county, 
to the frontier. The county was created by the assembly. 
As the colony grew in wealth, the oldest counties were more conserva- 
tive than the newer ones and were unwilling to create the latter as 
rapidly as the growth of population seemed to demand, lest the control 
of the assembly pass into the hands of "back counties." The early 
counties were relatively small, and they took pains to have the newer 
ones very large. As representation was not in proportion to popula- 
tion, the older counties were thus able to keep a large influence in the 
assemblies. This led to bitter conflicts. As the people of the newer 
counties were, from Pennsylvania southward, largely of Scotch-Irish 
stock and poor men, the contest often took the shape of a democracy 
against an aristocracy. In North Carolina the controversy between 
the counties was peculiarly bitter, because those in the Albemarle 
region, the oldest in the province, had five representatives each, while 
the new ones had only two. The old counties thus had an overweening 
influence in the assembly, which the governor sought to break down. 
He finally called the assembly to meet on the Cape Fear, so remote 
from the Albemarle region that not all of the large delegation from the 
old counties could attend. The result was that all the Albemarle 
delegates refused to attend, disputed on the ground of no quorum 
the legality of the laws passed without them, and refused to pay taxes 
levied as well as to recognize the legality of a new law apportioning 
representation. So unpleasant a situation was created that for eight 
years the wheels of government were nearly at a standstiU. Ulti- 
mately there was a compromise by which the older counties retained 
their disproportionate representation and a number of new counties 
were created. 

By 1760 the opposition between new and old settlements had taken 
on a territorial character. In Massachusetts, as well as in Virginia 
and the Carolinas, the wealthy men lived on the coast. 
As men of education and conservative business instinct, '^^® Mob," 
they were at odds with the small farmers of the interior Aristocrats." 
over many questions. They called the popular party 
"the mob" and its leaders "demagogues," while the popular party 


called them "aristocrats" and oppressors of the poor. When the 
revolution was coming to the explosion point, the latter class held back 
a long time and many of them ultimately repudiated a movement in 
which were so many of the "demagogues." It must not be forgotten 
that each side gave an important impulse to our development. One 
was a conservative force and checked the dangers which came from 
inexperienced leaders : the other incited to liberty and political 
equality and checked the tendency of society to settle down into an 
aristocracy of wealth. This tendency of the newer communities 
towards democracy has continued throughout our history, steadily 
following the frontier westward. 

When an individual had a right to a grant of land, that is, a warrant, 
he sought a surveyor, a public officer, who ran the bounds of the grant 

from any ungranted lands open to settlement. The sur- 
TaWngup ^^^^ ^j^^ ^^iq warrant was returned to the proper officer, 

in most cases the secretary of the colony, who made a deed 
which when signed by the governor constituted a legal title. For the 
warrant, survey, and deed fees were paid ; and they constituted a large 
part of the remuneration of the officers concerned. There were many 
complaints, especially in the royal provinces, that the fees were ex- 
orbitant. In all but trading and fishing communities land specula- 
tion was the favorite means of making money. The surveyor, who 
from his travels into all parts of the forest had opportunity to find 
the best tracts of ungranted land, was much concerned in the opera- 
tion, either buying outright and selling later when the advance of 
population had raised the price, or becoming the agent of some rich 
man who could make the investment. Many of the great fortunes of 
the colonies at the beginning of the revolution were derived from land 
speculation. This was particularly true in the southern colonies, 
into which immigrants moved rapidly from 1730 to 1775. The 
shrewd men who bought the frontier land in the early part of this 
period reaped handsome profits from their ventures. 

In 1760 the total population of the colonies was 1,596,000, of which 
New England had 473,000, the middle colonies 405,000, and the South, 

including Maryland, 718,000. Virginia was the largest 
^°i76o*^°° colony, with 315,000 inhabitants, and Georgia was the 

smallest, with 9000. At that time slavery existed every- 
where, but in the colonies north of Maryland it had only 10 per cent 
of the population, while in the others it had 41 per cent. North 
Carolina alone of the southern colonies had not yielded largely to 
this form of labor, the slaves being here only 1 7 per cent of the popu- 
lation, while in South Carolina they were 70 per cent, and in Virginia 
47 per cent. 

Most of the immigrants to America, both before and after the 
revolution, were poor people seeking to improve their fortunes. In 
all the colonies were exceptions to this statement. There were per- 


sons who came as oflEicials, or ministers in early New England, and 
in Virginia were a number of gentlemen adventurers in the Crorawellian 
days, and always a few superior men to whom the charm 
of the wilderness was strong ; but all these together were ^°f^ 
a small part of the population. And yet this part had Poor People, 
an influence larger than its size would seem to warrant. 
It contributed the social ideals of a new community. The educated 
clergy and other leaders of early New England were the models for 
later clergymen and leading men of colonial birth. The early gentle- 
men adventurers of Virginia, Maryland, and South Carolina were the 
men whom the colonials who became rich sought to imitate. Thus the 
aim of the South became to found estates like those of the lower 
English gentry and to reproduce their manners, their sports, and their 
intellectual life. In New England, sports, manners, and intellectual 
life had the serious cast of the early Puritans. In every royal colony 
the governor and other officers sent over from England were very in- 
fluential in all social matters. The history of American society re- 
veals the evolution of a healthy, earnest, and teachable democracy, 
forming its social ideals by those of Europe, and seeking to reject 
what was bad in the old and to improve in its own way that which it 
had inherited from its own past. 

Laboring Classes 

In the beginning the colonists had white laborers, persons who ar- 
rived with their masters under contract to work for stipulated periods. 
But when the settlers needed more servants it was diffi- 
cult to get them in the colony, where any industrious ggryants 
freeman could easily become a proprietor. Orders were 
accordingly sent to agents in England to send over servants, the 
employer paying the commission of the agent who secured the servant 
and the passage money demanded by the ship captain who brought 
him over. Under these conditions the supply was small, while the 
demand was ever greater. Colony products were bulky and many 
ships sailed to America in ballast, and their captains were eager to 
get cargoes wherever possible. The agents who collected servants 
were urged to furnish servants and no questions asked about those 
they produced. Thus grew up the practice of kidnapping, or "spirit- 
ing" children, or even adults. They were enticed on 
board a short time before the ship sailed and were soon 
beyond the reach of effective protest. Arrived in the colony, the 
captain delivered the cargo to the planters who paid most. If such 
a servant was a minor, he was apprenticed to the master who paid his 
passage under forms prescribed by law. Many instances of hardship 
occurred in the English ports ; for the kidnappers were of the lowest 
class of criminals and stood on little ceremony in selecting their vie- 


tims ; but most of those whom they sent to America were the children 
of the laboring class, whose condition in the colony was probably 
better than that of their parents. After such an apprentice completed 
his term of service, he was a free man, and in most colonies received a 
grant of land. In many a community was a man of mark who had 
come to America in this way. 

The free servants who could not pay their passage had the habit of 
contracting to serve for a term of years the captain who took them to 

America, and he would transfer the contract to a planter 
Voluntanly j^j. money. This class made up most of the indented serv- 
Servants. ants. Colonial law fixed the period for which they could 

be required to serve, usually from three to five years, pro- 
vided that the master must furnish proper food and clothing and that 
the servants should each receive a small tract of land when the term 
of service expired. In some colonies persons who had thus served out 
their time were called "redemptioners." A third source of labor for 

the colonies was convicts and "sturdy vagabonds," whom 
Convicts ^Yie English authorities sent abroad to be rid of the burden 
bonds. o^ supporting them. Virginia passed many laws to forbid 

these importations, but the king vetoed them. Maryland 
seems to have had little objection to them. Industrial conditions in 
New England did not favor a large servant class. Neighbors fre- 
quently hired themselves to neighbors, or even bound out their chil- 
dren to learn trades, but doing so did not imply a loss of social esteem 
on the part of the servants. In the colonies in which large plantations 
were the rule this was otherwise. To be a servant was to belong to a 
lower social rank than the master, and it was difficult for time and 
success to remove the stigma. The liberated servant in this part of 
the country found his refuge in the frontier, where he settled among 
persons as lowly born as himself and where his future rank was de- 
termined by his own exertions. 

The three classes named did not furnish sufl5cient labor for the 
tobacco and rice growers of the South. Here were two crops for 

which the world was willing to pay liberally and capable, 

as the producers thought, of extensive production. On 
the other hand, everywhere was an abundance of cheap land. Noth- 
ing was wanting but labor. The white servants were hard to obtain 
and rarely served longer than the term of the indenture, so that they 
must continually be replaced by new. ones, who in turn would be 
away to the frontier in four or five years. Under these conditions 
negro slaves, already largely used in the Spanish colonies, began to 
be employed. The first African slaves in America arrived in Virginia 
in 1619, but they were not satisfactory laborers. They were intract- 
able and unacquainted with the labor requirements of a civilized com- 
munity. To control them and get them to labor profitably was 
difficult, and most planters objected to it. The number in the colony 


grew so slowly that in 1700 it was only 6000. By this time it was ob- 
served that "new negroes," those recently imported from Africa, 
worked very well if distributed among colony-born negroes ; and this 
reconciled the planters to the use of this form of labor. The wide 
expansion of tobacco culture fixed the practice of slavery in Maryland 
and Virginia. The early South Carolinians were chiefly from Barba- 
dos, where slavery had already gone through its experimental stage, 
and they had this kind of labor from the beginning. Slavery existed 
in the North as well as in the South ; for there was at this time very 
little public opinion against it. But it was not profitable on the small 
farms of the North, and in this region the slaves were chiefly in the 
towns as domestic servants or laborers. In 1760 there were only 87,000 
blacks north of Maryland to 299,000 in the other colonies. 

When England began to have colonies, her law had no provision for 
slavery. In fact, the institution had nearly died out in later Roman 
times, and from that period the impression prevailed in Europe that 
no Christian could be enslaved. Negro slavery existed in Morocco, 
and when the Spaniards found that Indian slaves suc- 
cumbed before the hard work in the American mines Slavery, the 
they introduced it into their colonies. The African has xype. 
accepted bondage more readily than any other race. The 
Spaniards found him a satisfactory slave, and their example was fol- 
lowed in the British and French West Indies. In this part of America, 
therefore, slavery was formed after the ancient model, and the absolute 
dominion of the master over his slave was generally recognized. In 
the continental colonies this was not at first the case. 
Here early slavery was a kind of continuous indented ^^^ "^'^ 
service, the master being required to give his slave proper 
food and care. But slowly a code of laws evolved which recognized 
slavery and gave it a legal status. 

The settlement of South Carolina chiefly by men of Barbados in- 
troduced the West Indian type of slavery on the continent ; and the 
success which followed undoubtedly stimulated the spread 
of slavery in the tobacco colonies. In 1739, when the slave Code* 
number of slaves in South Carolina largely exceeded that 
of the whites, there was a serious slave outbreak. One result was a 
revision of the slave code in the colony, and this example was followed 
in other colonies. Out of these codes one may gather the following 
general features. All negroes or persons of mixed negro blood were 
slaves whose mothers were slaves. They could be punished by their 
masters, and if one died from chastisement where malice was not 
evident the slayer was not punished. But maliciously killing a slave 
was forbidden. For serious offenses, as murder, arson, theft, and 
maiming, the slave was not punished by the master, but he was tried 
by a court of two or three justices and several freeholders, who took 
such evidence as they saw fit, and, sitting as a jury but without form of 


law, gave the verdict. For minor offences the usual punishment was 
thirty-nine lashes. A negro could not testify against a white person, 
the assumption being that all negroes, bond or free, were hostile to the 
whites and unreliable witnesses, either from prejudice or from mental 
incapacity to observe accurately. Slaves were not allowed to go about 
without written permission, they might not have firearms, and restric- 
tions were placed on their trading and their meeting together. At 
this time the fear of slave insurrections was as great as later, and it 
was provided that conspiracy against the whites should be punished 
by death. If a negro showed violence to a white person, he might be 
whipped, or even killed if the case were aggravated. The slave codes 
of this epoch remained in force with slight modification until the 
general revision which followed the inauguration of the abolition move- 
ment in I 83 I. 

The slave code was made to meet a peculiar condition. If men of 
a lower stage of civilization were brought into the colonies, they must 
not, it was held, be admitted to the same privileges as the whites. 
That this was the opinion of all parts of the country is shown by the 
regulations enforced in all parts of the North where there were many 
negroes. Boston, the ports in Rhode Island and Connecticut, Phila- 
delphia, the town of New York and the great plantations along the 
Hudson held most of the slaves in the North. In all these places 
restrictions were imposed on the slave's right to go about at night, 
and his right to traffic and to have arms ; he was tried by special tri- 
bunals, and freely whipped- by his master. 

Colonial Industry 

Agriculture was the most extensive industry. Every colony pro- 
duced its own food in normal times, and most of them had some for 

export. The sugar islands, foreign as well as British, offered 
Agriculture ^ good market for such supplies, for they found it most 
Lumber. profitable to devote themselves exclusively to their one 

staple. To them the middle colonies sent great quantities 
of flour, pork, and beef, and New England sent potatoes, vegetables, 
and fish. From Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina went out 
tobacco for the world, and from South Carolina rice and indigo. The 
Carolinas also exported tar, pitch, and turpentine. Lumber, either 
as sawed timber or as boards and staves, was exported from all the 
colonies. The masts which came from the New England forests were 
famous in western Europe. 

Manufacturing in the modern sense was unknown in 
fac^res ^^^ colonies, but it must be remembered that the factory 

system had not yet developed in Europe. In England 
weavers, shoemakers, and other handworkers lived in villages and fol- 
lowed their trades solely. In the North most of the farmers knew some 
trade which they followed when they could not work on the farms. 


Thus the coarser grades of cloth, hats, shoes, joiner's work, tools, 
and nails were made in the colonies. In the South each large plan- 
tation had its artisans, many of them slaves. Importations were 
usually the better grades of cloth, ironware, implements, etc., and 
articles which in the very nature of things the colonists could not 
make, as queensware, cutlery, silks, articles of luxury, and wines. 
Iron ore was found and smelted from New Jersey to Virginia. In 
1755 pig iron to the amount of 3425 tons was sent to England. Rum 
was extensively manufactured in New England. It was 
made out of the molasses which the sugar islands gave 
in exchange for fish, lumber, and food products. It is estimated that 
early in the eighteenth century 1,260,000 gallons of rum were made in 
Boston annually. Until the whiskey of the Scotch-Irish supplanted 
it late in that century, this form of spirits was the common tipple in 
America. It was sold everywhere, north and south, and largely ex- 
ported to Africa, where it was exchanged for slaves. 

England made many restrictions on colonial manufactures ; for 
she was determined to keep the American market open for her own 
inhabitants. In 1700 the colonies learned that they might 
not export woollen goods, or send them from one colony British Re- 
to another, or send them from place to place in the stnctions on 
same colony. In 1732 the exportation of hats and their Manu- 
intercolonial sale were forbidden by an act of parliament, factures. 
This was done at the instance of the London hat makers, 
for it was known that the colonists made beaver hats cheaper than 
the same articles could be made in England, and were beginning to 
gain the market for them both in England and on the continent. 
The growth of the iron industry caused alarm to the English iron 
makers, and to satisfy them it was enacted in 1750 that the colonies 
should export to England only pig and bar iron and that no more 
mills for the higher iron products should be erected in the colonies. 

Fishing was an important industry in New England. The fact that 
French and British fishermen reaped a large harvest in adjacent 
waters naturally led the colonists to seek to share it. ^. . . 
When the first settlers arrived, the cod was found as far 
south as the cape which now bears its name ; but being taken in 
large numbers, it retreated northward until finally it must be sought 
off Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. In the early stages a rowboat 
and some lines sufficed to outfit a fisherman. When one must go to 
the northern waters, a larger vessel and a crew of several men were 
necessary. Fishing then became a matter of capital and organization. 
Sometimes the boats were owned by those who sailed them, the crew 
serving for shares. Sometimes they were owned by capitalists, who 
gave the crew shares in proportion to the value of the ship. The 
early spring witnessed the departure of the fishing fleet. If luck was 
good, the craft came in early and were even known to make a second 


voyage in the same season. The Ufe was perilous and demanded the 
best qualities of character and physical endurance. It was an ex- 
cellent school of democracy. By the end of the colonial period share 
fishing was being replaced by capitalistic enterprise. The fish mer- 
chant, who bought and exported the catch, now became a great factor 
in the industry. He sent out the ships, hired the crews, and reaped 
the larger part of the reward. Alongside of the cod fisheries de- 
veloped whaling. This industry was at first confined to off-shore 
fishing, the waters around Nantucket being especially full of these 
great fish. But here, too, in time it was necessary to follow the 
quarry into distant seas. Large ships were built, voyages became 
lengthened from weeks to months, and from months to years, and at 
last every ocean was the hunting ground of these hardy New Eng- 
landers. The whaling industry lost much of its prosperity with the 
discovery of mineral oils in the central West, about the middle of the 
nineteenth century. 


In the northern colonies trade established itself in much the same 

way as in England, that is, trading towns on shore and river supported 

^ a merchant class which distributed merchandise to, and 


collected the products from, the people around them. 

Also, there arose such large importing centers as Boston, Providence, 
New York, Philadelphia, and Charleston. The growth of these 
places was rapid, for each was the commercial metropolis of a large 
and rapidly developing back country. In 1760 Boston and Phila- 
delphia each had a population of 20,000. New York came next with 
10,000 ; Charleston, whose merchants exported rice to many parts of 
Europe, had 9000, and was the home of much wealth and luxury. 
Boston's size was not what might be expected from the oldest city of 
the group, located in a large commercial colony. The explanation, 
however, is not far to seek. The New England trade was shared by a 
number of smaller towns, as Salem, Marblehead, Gloucester, Newport, 
Providence, Portsmouth, Falmouth, New Haven, New London, and 
Hartford. It was not until the era of manufactures that Boston by 
becoming the financial center of a large industrial area attained her 
modern predominance. 

Meanwhile, Virginia, and to a certain extent Maryland, had a com- 
mercial development of their own, the basis of which was the tobacco 
trade. No town of importance was established. In Mary- 
Trade in j^j^(;^ ^-j^g j-^gg Qf Baltimore begins with the settlement of 
and^arv- ^^^ Susquehannah valley in the first decades of the eight- 
land, eenth century, and in 1760 it had less than 5000 inhabit- 
ants. The planters of this region dealt directly with 
London or Bristol commission agents. Ships came to their planta- 
tion wharves, took aboard the year's crop of tobacco, and returned 


next year with the proceeds in merchandise ordered by the seller. 
The river planters were the rich men of their communities. Behind 
them on the less fertile high land were the poorer farmers whose small 
crops were not profitably consigned to English agents. The large 
planters, therefore, became traders, buying the tobacco of their poorer 
neighbors and opening plantation stores in which the small 
farmers bought necessary merchandise. Under these circumstances, 
competition in trade was difficult, and towns could not develop. 
More than once the governor by instructions from the crown tried to 
get laws passed in the Virginia assembly to encourage them, but the 
planters, who controlled that body, were able to defeat his efforts. In 
1760 the largest Virginia town was Norfolk, whose prosperity arose 
chiefly from the trade which came to it from the Albemarle section of 
North Carolina, where the poor harbors prevented the coming of 
ocean-going ships. Rice grew in the Cape Fear section which, after 
its settlement about 1725, had a thriving export trade from Wilming- 
ton ; for its harbor was adequate for the ships of the day. 

Spite of the navigation acts (see page 83) colonial trade prospered. 
These laws, in fact, benefited colonial shipping in some respects, 
since they allowed it to share the monopoly due to ex- 
cluding foreign ships from the British trade. Moreover, Navigation 
they left fish, food products for the West Indies, lumber, Trade. 
and many other articles, untouched. Of the "enumerated 
commodities" of the act of 1660 only one, tobacco, was grown in the 
continental colonies. The price of this article, it is true, fell steadily 
after 1660, and much suffering ensued in Virginia and Maryland; 
and this was of great significance, since tobacco aggregated about 
half of the total colonial exports. But with the operation of the law 
of 1660 went a series of duties on tobacco in England by 
which in Queen Anne's time a pound paid six and a third V^f^ 
pence to the royal treasury, which was three times the Trade, 
price of the commodity in Virginia. At the same time 
there was a vast increase in the colonial supply. It is impossible to 
say to which of these three causes one should attach most importance 
in accounting for the distress of the planters. 

As time passed other articles were added to the "enumerated com- 
modities." Rice was placed on the list in 1706, which raised the price 
so much that South Carolina lost her trade to Spain and 
Portugal, one-tenth of her entire exportation. This, History of 
however, was regained in 1730, when parliament opened t a"' 

the trade to ports south of Cape Finisterre. In 1706 commodi- 
naval stores and molasses were also added to the list ; ties." 
but a bounty was placed on the former, and of the latter 
only that had been exported which formerly was brought into con- 
tinental ports in exchange for products in the West Indies. In 1722 
copper, of which very little was produced, and beaver and other 


skins were placed on the " enumerated " list. Undoubtedly these laws 
limited the development of trade, and they raised the price of mer- 
chandise by requiring that all goods imported into the 
Commerce colonies must come from British ports. But spite of 
/Restric- * these restrictions colonial commerce developed rapidly, 
tions. Fish, food products, lumber, and many less important 

things were not directly affected by the navigation laws. 
Moreover, one must not forget that the navigation acts were never 
strictly enforced. Their very existence made it profitable to violate 
them ; for both trader's profits and freights were enhanced 
Eva^on of ^^ ^^le prohibited channels. The most alluring field of 
tion Laws^" such operations was the French and Spanish colonies in 
the West Indies and in Central and South America. 
Various means of violating the law were used. One was to bribe 
officials to issue permits to trade with foreign sugar colonies, another 
was to clear for a British port and visit a foreign place under a false 
registry. On returning home a few casks of British sugar on the top 
of a large quantity of French sugar would satisfy a conniving customs 
inspector ; and if a vessel was seized now and then because the game 
did not go smoothly, the ordinary profits were so great that the owner 
could stand the loss. Before condemning these people we should re- 
member that they considered the laws unjust and that many British 
officials in the colonies themselves winked at their violation. The 
same conditions followed the enactment of the navigation acts in Eng- 
land, where it was estimated that 40,000 persons were engaged in 
illegal trade. 

In 1733 parliament passed the "Molasses Act," laying prohibitory 
duties on molasses, sugar, and rum made in foreign colonies and im- 
ported into the British colonies in America. It grew out 
The" Mo- ^ of the complaint of the British sugar islands that the 
m^a^ ^ ' French and Dutch islands sold their molasses to the New 
England rum manufacturers, who, it was intended, should 
now take their raw product from the British colonies, whatever the 
price. The British islands did not produce enough molasses for the 
rum makers, and the situation thus created was preposterous. The 
law became practically a dead letter soon after it was passed. Some 
ingenious Yankees avoided it by sailing from Jamaica with cargoes of 
empty casks formally cleared as molasses. Stopping at a French island 
these barrels would be filled, and the Jamaica clearance protected them 
on the return to New England. The "Molasses Act" did much to 
turn New Englanders against England and to teach them to despise 
her laws. 

The slave trade was an important feature of the commerce of 
Boston, Rhode Island ports, New York, and Philadelphia. Laden 
with rum, a vessel would sail for Guinea, the Congo, or Madagascar, 
and exchange her cargo for slaves, palm oil, or gold dust. The slaves, 


"black ivory," were bought in 1676 for three pounds each and were 
worth seventeen in Jamaica. By 1760 the demand for them had 
raised the prices so that they now cost twelve pounds each 
in Africa and brought thirty-five in Jamaica. A ship -j-r^de *^* 
that carried two hundred negroes under these conditions 
netted a handsome profit to her owner. Before 1698 the slave trade 
was monopolized by the Royal African Company ; but in this year it 
was thrown open, and the colonial shipowners took an active part in 
it. Most of the slave ships sailed from Africa to the West Indies or 
to the southern English colonies. The slave trade necessarily inflicted 
horrors on the imported negroes. They were crowded into holds 
without ventilation. If a storm was encountered, the hatches were 
nailed down and left so until it abated, when the hungry and thirsty 
wretches were allowed on deck again, and at such a time there were 
usually dead bodies to be brought out. The "Middle Passage," as 
the voyage was called, was long a synonym of terror; and this was 
true in spite of efforts of the slave's captain to reduce the hardship. 
For since his slaves sold best if they seemed healthy and strong, it was 
to his interest to feed and care for them as well as possible. 

Race Elements in Colony Planting 

The beginning of all the colonies but New York and Delaware was 
English. The English life and law was the rule, or became so when 
the foreign planted colonies fell into English hands. New 
England, dominated by peculiar ideals, received only a ^^^}^^^°^, 
small stream of immigration after the restoration of the English. 
Stuarts, 1660. It remained the most English of the great 
sections of America until the era of manufacturing began about 1808. 
The English stock filled the eastern parts of Virginia, Maryland, and 
the Carolinas, and most of New Jersey, while it mingled with the 
Dutch of New York and Delaware and was the controlling element in 
early Pennsylvania. But in all the middle and southern colonies 
were many non-English persons who came singly or in small groups. 
Such was the situation about 1680. At that time opened a new era 
of American immigration. Into the valleys that lie 
east of the Alleghanies, from southern New York to Georgia, g *^^gg ^f 
came a vast tide of settlers — some of them colony born. Population, 
but most of them of foreign Protestant origin. The 
foreigners are to be distinguished in the following groups : 

I. The Huguenots. They began to arrive with the revocation of 
the Edict of Nantes, 1685. They settled in several colonies, but the 
Santee river region of South Carolina received the largest 
number. Here in a compact settlement they preserved 
their own church organization, accumulated fortunes, and became a 
center from which a French influence was transmitted to other parts 


of the colony. Some of the leading soldiers, politicians, merchants, 
and literary men of South Carolina were of this stock. Another 
Huguenot settlement was on the James river, near Richmond, Vir- 
ginia ; and another, on Pamplico river in North Carolina, began well 
but was nearly extinguished in the Indian war of 171 1. There were 
also many of this faith among the settlers in New York. Coming 
singly or in small numbers, Huguenots settled in many places. Of all 
the great European nations France has contributed the smallest por- 
tion of the American population. 

2. The Germans. The Mennonites, German Quakers, were induced 
to come to Pennsylvania soon after it became a colony. The move- 
ment began in 168^ with the settlement of Germantown 
by a group under Rev. Daniel F. Pastorious. About 
1 7 10 a great wave of German immigration began, the origin of which 
was the devastation of the Palatinate by Louis XIV of France. 
Most Palatines were Protestants, and a large number fled to England 
for succor. Huddled together in tents, objects of charity, it seemed 
well to send them to the colonies. The government gave aid, and 
five hundred were sent to the help of de Grafifenreid, who was taking 
a small Swiss colony to found New Berne, North Carolina. The 
Indian massacre in 1711 fell heavily on this settlement, many of whose 
members fell or fled ; but a small remainder continued on the spot. 
In the same year three thousand Palatines arrived in New York, where 
Governor Hunter set them to preparing pine trees for making tar. 
The industry proved a failure, and the Palatines moved to the Scho- 
harie valley, where the Mohawks sold them land. When the colonial 
authorities demanded that they also have English deeds from their 
hands, a large number refused, and moved to Pennsylvania, settling 
near Reading. In this migration was the father of the noted Conrad 
Weiser, long prominent as an intermediary between the whites and the 
Indians. By this time the Pennsylvanians had discovered the possi- 
bilities of the German peasantry as a source of indented labor. Plausi- 
ble agents went everywhere in the Rhine valley, proclaiming the riches 
of the province. They collected great numbers who articled came to 
Philadelphia, where they were transferred to agents who led them 
about the colony until they were disposed of to the farmers. The 
German "redemptioners" suffered much hardship, as did most of 
the indented servants who came to the colonies ; but they had good 
powers of resistance, and, their service ended, they settled into sturdy 
and thrifty citizens. Not all the German immigrants were servants, 
however. Many came as small farmers, or artisans. The Pennsyl- 
vania counties of Berks and Lancaster, and the Lehigh and Lebanon 
valleys received most of this stock, and in 1760 they were about one- 
third of the population of the colony. They were divided into many 
sects, and clung tenaciously to their language. From the Pennsyl- 
vania settlements an overflow reached Virginia, in the Shenandoah 


valley, and North Carolina, where they made a large portion of the 
population of the Yadkin and Catawba valleys. Among the Germans 
a prominent group were the Moravians, followers of Huss, who after 
a discouraging attempt in Georgia settled Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, 
from which a colony about the middle of the century settled Salem, 
in North Carolina. Many Germans moved from Pennsylvania into 
New Jersey. 

3. The Scotch-Irish. It was also Penn's liberal policy which first 
turned these people toward America. They were the descendants of 
those Scotch Presbyterians whom James I settled in North 

Ireland, hoping thus to turn that country from Catholi- j^^j^^ co c - 
cism. After a century of conflict with a barren soil and un- 
friendly surroundings they were as poor as when they began, and the 
native Irish were no whit less Catholic. Seasoned by this experience 
they made the best frontiersmen in America, where both natural and 
human environment was more favorable than in Ireland. They began 
to come to Pennsylvania in considerable numbers early in the eight- 
eenth century, settling in Lancaster county and to the west of it as far 
as Pittsburg. From that region they turned into New Jersey, or 
crossed the narrow part of Maryland into Virginia, moving thence 
into North Carolina. By 1760 they were going into every valley in 
this region, and another stream, coming from Charleston, was filling 
the South Carolina uplands. The sons of these immigrants, still 
loving the pioneer life with its perils and its rewards, passed over the 
Alleghanies and laid the foundations of Kentucky and Tennessee. 
Of this stock came John C. Calhoun, Andrew Jackson, and many 
another important leader. 

4. Minor Groups. Besides the Dutch in New York and the Swedes 
in Delaware one ought also to remember the Swiss. If but few of 
them remained in de Graffenried's settlement at New 

Berne, North Carolina, a still larger number settled and ggujces. 
survived in Pennsylvania. Speaking the same language, 
most of them were confounded with the Germans. Another dis- 
tinctive element was the Scotch Highlanders, vv^ho came in large bands 
to the Cape Fear valley after the failure of their cause at Culloden, 
1745. Like the Scotch-Irish, they were stout Presbyterians. Scotch 
traders were found in every port. The same was true, but to a less 
extent, of the Jews. In New York, Rhode Island, and Philadelphia 
these shrewd traders of both races were important factors in business. 
The Welsh were not a large colonizing race, but small settlements 
were found in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and per- 
haps other colonies. The Irish, as distinguished from the Scotch- 
Irish, furnished no distinct colony group of importance ; but they 
contributed largely to the laboring class from the earliest times, and 
were widely distributed. 

But the best coloni/jers were native-born colonists. Every settled 


community produced men of adventurous disposition, to whom the 
forest was more attractive than the farmsteads of the 
TheAmeri- East. Selling their lands, if they had any, they turned 
Fr"' f*ere- westward where axe and rifle would enable them to found 
men. homes and enjoy freedom in a new settlement. They 

were not thrifty, and they have left few memorials except 
the paths they made and the fields they cleared, but they did important 
and lasting work for posterity. 

Religion in the Colonies 

The Puritan churches in New England, and the Established Church 
elsewhere were the strongest religious organizations in the colonies. 

Along with them went a large number of smaller 
'^3*®/^°'^^ churches, Presbyterian, Lutheran, Dutch Reform, and 
Churches. Baptist. This enumeration does not include the Roman 

Catholics, who were numerous only in Maryland. After 
the first days of settlement most of the immigrants came to America 
from purely economic motives. They took land where they wished, 
and for years a new community might care little for church or baptism. 
But as it became populous the churches concerned were apt to begin 
to gather up their own people into congregations, to establish meeting- 
places, and to send preachers. This was especially true of the settle- 
ment of the interior. Too much cannot be said in appreciation of 
these efforts as a civilizing influence. Often the preacher was the 
only man from the outside world who ever visited the valley in 
which his flock was located. He was usually the herald of schools, 
and the counselor of social reform. 

Creating two royal provinces in New England — Massachusetts and 
New Hampshire — weakened Puritanism there. Anglican churches 

appeared in the principal towns, and in them the royal 
TheAngli- governors and their friends, to the horror of the stricter 
ta New"'^*^ Puritans, instituted the celebration of Christmas and 
England. Easter, as well as funerals and marriages according to the 

elaborate ceremonies of the English Church. Anglicans 
also protested against being taxed by the towns to pay the Puritan 
ministers' salaries ; and it was finally enacted in Massachusetts and 
Connecticut that this burden should be remitted when there was an 
Anglican organized congregation in the town in question. 

But the Puritan regime received its strongest check from internal 
causes. By 1690 the original settlers were dead. The new generation 

was American-born and did not feel so keenly as their 
T^^t'""^ fathers the old resentment toward the Anglican Church. 
Puritanism, ^^^ ^^^ ^^^Y ^o\d SO Strictly to the older dogmas. At 

the head of this modernist feeling was Harvard College 
and some of the Boston ministers. Opposed to it was a reactionary 
party, regretting the decay of the old faith, and striving under l]\: 


lead of Increase and Cotton Mather to bring back the existing 
generation to the older faith. This party was strong in the rural 
towns. It was through its predominance that the witchcraft incident 
of 1688-1693 stained the page of Massachusetts history. 

During the Middle Ages, all Christendom believed in witchcraft 
and voiced in laws the Biblical injunction, "Thou shalt not suffer a 
witch to live." The Puritans, accustomed to interpret j. e " t- 
the Bible literally, accepted this as final ; and in the ence of 
colonies as well as in England they thought death should Witches 
be the penalty for witchcraft. It is for opposing witch- Generally 
craft with death that history condemns the ruling party in ^°°*^^'*^°- 
Massachusetts, but it should be content to condemn the excessive 
and blind zeal with which the law was executed in this particular case. 
New England Puritans believed thoroughly in the guidance of God. 
When, for example, their charter was threatened the council implored 
divine enlightenment and believed that God wished them to resist. 
For all that, the charter was lost. This but increased the despair of 
those who saw everywhere a relaxation of the pure faith of their 
fathers. The ravages of the Indians were not forgotten 
before this new calamity was upon them. To the stricter jr^"^^" 
party it seemed that the anger of God was heavy on his 
people, and the natural consequence was a heightening of mysticism. 

Circumstances turned this tendency of the time so that it hit upon 
witchcraft. About 1680 a number of clergymen around Boston began 
to investigate the history of witchcraft in New England. A short 
time later Increase Mather, in a book called "Illustrious 
Providences," described the nature of witchcraft, and his '^^^ 
pedantic son, Cotton Mather, desiring to study the sub- and^wuch- 
ject experimentally, began to gather data for a book on craft. 
"The Wonders of the Invisible World," a discussion of the 
"nature, number, and operations of the devils." In 1688 two chil- 
dren of Boston declared themselves bewitched by an Irish laundress, 
who was tried and executed. He took the two girls to his own house, 
observed their actions, and published his conclusions in 1689. Thus 
the pubHc mind was made ready for the sad affair at Salem. 

In a village (now Danvers) in the town of Salem some girls who had 
been reading about and discussing witchcraft began to act in the 
strange ways bewitched persons were said to act, and they 
alleged that certain friendless old persons had cast spells v*^^?"*" 
upon them. The pastor of the town accepted their state- saiem. 
ment and demanded the punishment of the witches. In- 
vestigation was had, but the whole community was so excited that a 
cool judgment was impossible, and the verdict of ministers and lay- 
men was that witches, emissaries of the devil, were brazenly established 
in the village. Many accused persons were arrested, while the village 
and several other communities held days of fast and prayer to avoid 


this additional infliction of divine anger. Then the governor was re- 
quested to appoint a special high court to try the imprisoned ones. 
He compHed, and in the summer of 1692 nineteen persons were con- 
victed and executed for witchcraft. By this time the people of the 
country were in terror of the witch-hunters, and many persons when 
accused admitted guilt and sought to escape punishment by throwing 
the blame on others. The court took "spectral" evidence, i.e. when 
a "bewitched" person declared he saw an alleged witch coming in the 
form of a yellow bird it was held good evidence, though no one else 
could say he saw a yellow bird. To declare that the prosecutions were 
foolish was to bring down a charge of witchcraft on oneself. At 
first only miserable old men and women were accused. But in time 
people of high social position were aimed at, one of them being the 
wife of the governor himself. At last public opinion underwent a 
revulsion, the special court was dissolved, and the prisons were emptied. 
After a while reason resumed sway and the conservative leaders 
suffered a loss of influence. 

The doctrines of the liberals, however, caused dismay in many quar- 
ters. One of the innovations was a relaxation of the old doctrine of 

conversion. In 1662 it had been agreed that conversion 
The "Half- ^^g ^^^ essential to church membership. In a regime in 
nant."°'^^" which civil status depended on church relations this was 

rather a natural conclusion. But it found steady opposi- 
tion with those who insisted that the ancient faith should be preserved. 
It was scornfully referred to as "The Halfway Convenant." It was 
even declared by the more venturesome of the party that many min- 
isters had not been converted. In 1734 there began in Northampton, 
Massachusetts, through the preaching of Jonathan Edwards, a great 

revival, the foundation of which was the necessity of con- 
A^akeSrT^* version. The preacher was eloquent and fervid, and under 

his fiery words many persons were convcted of sin, fell into 
trances, or shouted joyfully in the assurance of forgiveness. The 
meetings attracted attention throughout western Massachusetts, and 
much was done to create a more fervent spiritual life. In 1740, when 
the fame of the Northampton meetings was still fresh, George White- 
field, former associate of the Wesleys and a most remarkable preacher, 
arrived in New England. At first he was received favorably by all 
parties and his meetings, attended by immense crowds, resulted in pro- 
fessions of conversion by many thousands. His strong insistence on 
the necessity of conversion at last aroused the opposition of the liberal 
clergy. He replied in kind, and soon the colony was divided into two 
religious factions. The same result appeared in Connecticut. Both 
Harvard and Yale colleges were opposed to the revival in its later 
stages. Whitefield is not prominent in the movement after 1745, but 
he was followed by many earnest preachers who had less ability. The 
upshot was a separatist movement, the seceders largely joining the 


Baptists. The "Great Awakening" was also strong on Long Island 
and in New Jersey, where many New Englanders had settled. 

In this connection one must not forget the significance of Rhode 
Island in the cause of toleration. To Roger Williams and his followers 
was due the steady assertion of this theory, in the face of 
the strict Puritan conformity in the adjacent colonies. Religious 
Small as his colony was, it was a safe refuge for all who R^o^jje'is- 
demanded freedom of worship. He received the Quakers land, 
and refused to persecute them, although he believed their 
doctrines false and dangerous. The seed he sowed bore fruit many 
years afterwards. Rhode Island, through this course, became a home 
of sects, and their clashing purposes often produced social confusion, 
but the religious history of America could not well do without their 

The English Church was established by law in Virginia, Maryland, 
and the Carolinas. In the first it was recognized in the beginning of 
of the colony's existence. At this time the Puritans had 
not begun to leave the Church of England, and the result v^^Ch^^'h 
was that "Low Church" forms were planted in this, the in Virginia, 
oldest colony, the effects of which survive to this day. 
But dissenters were not tolerated, and in 1643 3- ^^^w, passed under the 
influence of Governor Berkeley, forbade any other than an Anglican min- 
ister to conduct religious services in the colony. Late in the century 
the Baptists began to appear, and seem to have suffered little inconven- 
ience. The coming of the Scotch-Irish, all of them Presbyterians, 
in the eighteenth century made matters worse. At first they were 
ignored by the religious authorities, but when traveling preachers ap- 
peared and began to gather them and any others whom they could in- 
fluence into churches the Anglican pastors protested. The ministers 
were arrested because they had no licenses, but the juries generally 
acquitted them. Thus broke down the attempt to exclude all but the 
Anglican faith from Virginia. By 1760 the Presbyterians, Baptists, 
and Quakers were well planted in the colony. 

In the beginning, Maryland, though settled by Catholics, had no 
church estabHshment. In 1649, when Puritanism was supreme in 
England, the assembly passed an act for religious tolera- 
tion. If it was passed, as seems probable, to enable Balti- ?° ^^^^7 
more to contmue m possession as proprietor, it at least caroiinas. 
was a good example. But it did not satisfy the Protes- 
tants, who were a large majority of the population ; and in 1692 and 
1702 they carried laws estabhshing the English Church, and those 
were followed by severe laws against the Roman Catholics. South 
Carolina established Anglicanism in 1706, after a long struggle with the 
dissenters, the victory being won at last by a combination with the 
Huguenots, who were in return given the status of an establishment in 
the parishes in which they were the large majority of the population. 


In North Carolina a law to establish the church was adopted about the 
same time by manipulation during the troublous era of the Cary Re- 
bellion, but there were so few adherents to the Anglican Church in the 
colony that it was enforced in only three or four parishes. In 1765 
there were only five Anglican clergymen in the province. In these 
colonies the law provided for parishes, usually identical with the 
counties and for a tax paid by all to support the clergymen. The 
parish affairs were left to vestries, self-perpetuating in Virginia and 
North Carolina, but chosen by the freeholders in Maryland and South 
Carolina. There was much complaint about the morals of the es- 
tablished clergy in Virginia and Maryland, "Cock-fighting parsons" 
being the term with which posterity dubbed them. Some of the 
clergymen seem to have fairly won the epithet. 

In New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware no laws 
could be passed to establish one form of religion. Here the dissenters 
prevailed, each racial element having its own religious 
Colonfes forms to which were added many others of non-racial 
origin. Pennsylvania was particularly concerned with 
them. "Africa is not more full of monsters," wrote a horrified Anglican 
clergyman, "than Pennsylvania is of sects." In New York the gov- 
ernor tried to give the Anglican Church the position of an establishment 
by limiting the right of ministers of other churches to preach. The 
attempt failed, but he got the assembly to give certain churches the 
right of support by public taxation. The British Toleration act of 
1689 giving liberty of worship to dissenters in England and Wales, but 
in no way favoring the Catholics, had its reaction in America. It was 
reenacted in Virginia, Massachusetts, New York, and in other colonies. 
Feeling in England and America was then strong against the Catholics, 
who were believed to be plotting to regain England through the res- 
toration of the Stuarts. Virginia required them to take the test-oath 
if they gave evidence or held ofhce; New York and Massachusetts, 
with eyes on the missionaries to the Indians, forbade a 
/ th*™^°* Catholic priest within their respective jurisdictions. 
Catholics. Maryland, although only about 3000 out of a total pop- 
ulation of 40,000 were Catholics, forbade the public cele- 
bration of the Roman services, nor could any of that faith teach school 
or purchase lands. 

The administration of the Anglican Church was under the direction 
of the Bishop of London, who ordained ministers for the provinces. 
In 1689 he adopted the policy of having a commissary 
of London^ to represent him in a colony, James Blair being appointed 
* ' for Virginia and Thomas Bray for Maryland. A com- 
missary had the right to inquire into the conduct of the clergy, but he 
could not dismiss an incumbent. In 1701 was organized the Society 
for the Propagation of the Gospel, a missionary organization which sent 
ministers to most of the colonies. The reports of these missionaries 
are an important source of knowledge of colonial social conditions. 


Education and Culture in the Colonies 

In another place this book treats of the origin of the New England 
public school system, probably the chief educational institution of 
the day (see page 476). Aside from that one must notice 
the beginning of the American college and the general s^hcfois 
attitude of the people toward middle schools. The first 
step toward providing higher education in any continental English 
colony was taken by the liberal group of which Sir Edwin Sandys was 
leader, when in 1620 a university was decreed for Henrico, in Virginia. 
A beginning was actually made, a teacher was employed, and funds 
were subscribed, but the Indian massacre of 1622 wiped out all traces 
of town and university. As the enterprise had depended on philan- 
thropic gentlemen in England, who now lost control of the colony, 
and as it had little support by the people in Virginia, it was not revived. 

The next step was taken by the general court of Massachusetts, 
which in 1636 voted 400 pounds for a "shoale or coUedge" to educate 
the English and Indians in "knowledge and Godliness." 
In 1638 Rev. John Harvard died, leaving the college a Harvard 
legacy of books and money, and from him the institution p^y^ded 
was called Harvard College. In 1650 it was formally in- 1636. 
corporated. The town in which it was situated was called 
Cambridge, from the English university town in which several of the 
Massachusetts ministers had studied. Two degrees were offered, 
Bachelor of Arts, for which the requirement was ability to read the 
Old and New Testaments in the originals and to translate them into 
Latin ; and Master of Arts, for which seven years' study was necessary, 
as in Cambridge and Oxford. In a new colony it was not always 
possible to live up to these excellent standards, but for over half a 
century Harvard was the only center of learning in America, and it 
furnished New England during this time with a body of well-taught 

By 1700 Harvard was identified with the religious liberals, spite of 
the fact that Increase Mather was its president. This displeased the 
conservatives, who were at length rejoiced to know that a 
new college, sound in theology, was in 1701 established p^'^ 9 °l'*^® 
in Connecticut. Eli Yale, who had been governor of ^^^^ ' 
Madras, gave it a sum of money, and in 17 18 it was called 
Yale College. After tentative location at several places, it was in 
1 7 16 definitely placed at New Haven. Its governing body and 
faculty were required to accept the Saybrook Platform, a statement 
of faith formulated by a legislative commission and adopted by the 
assembly in 1708. Yale maintained outward conformity to this type 
of orthodoxy for a century, but by 1750 it had advanced far on the 
road of liberalism. 


In 1 69 1 Commissary Blair arrived in London to try to get a royal 
charter and to raise funds for a college in Virginia. When he broached 
the matter to Attorney-General Seymour, whose aid he 
William and needed, he was asked why the colony desired a college. 
w^^^ The answer was that it would furnish an educated ministry 

Founded, ^^ save the souls of the colonists. ''Souls!" exclaimed 
1693. Seymour, "D — n your Souls! Make tobacco!" But 

the commissary had great Scotch persistence, his request 
succeeded, and in 1693 a royal charter was issued for William and 
Mary College. It created a college and "free school" under the aus- 
pices of the Anglican Church. Commissary Blair was its first presi- 
dent, and its professors were clergymen. It had a large influence in 
colonial Virginia. Williamsburg, where it was located, soon became 
the capital of the colony and an attractive colonial society grew up under 
the protection of the governor and the college. For some years the 
"free school," free only in the sense that it admitted all students who 
met the intellectual and financial requirements, was the chief feature. 
When the curriculum of the college was organized, it had less Hebrew 
and Syriac than Harvard, but there was more of general culture. 

Thus at the beginning of the eighteenth century Anglicanism and the 
two branches of New England Puritanism had each its college. Fifty 
years later other religious organizations were developed 
^ J "". so strongly that they also could venture to establish seats 

Colleges. <^f learning. The first of these was the College of New 
Jersey, now Princeton University, established in 1746. 
Its support was Presbyterian, and it drew largely for a hundred years 
from the Scotch-Irish population extending from New Jersey south- 
ward. It is probable that the Great Awakening stimulated its crea- 
tion. By this time the desire for colleges as expressions of local pride 
had come into existence ; and in 1749 the University of Pennsylvania 
was founded, in 1754 King's College, now Columbia, in 1764 Rhode 
Island College, now Brown University, and in 1769 Dartmouth Col- 
lege in New Hampshire. In all these institutions except 
'^^^ the University of Pennsylvania the chief impulse to found 

and Hi lier ^^^ college came from a church. Higher education at the 
Education, time found its support in America in the necessity for the 
education of the ministers. In the charters of Yale, 
William and Mary, Princeton, King's (Anglican), and Brown (Bap- 
tist) arrangements were made to perpetuate the influence of the re- 
spective churches which founded them. Higher education in America, 
now so well able to stand on its own feet, was born of religion and long 
nourished by it. 

As to subjects taught, the colleges began with the high ideal of re- 
producing English college curricula. Harvard is supposed to have 
been modeled after Emanuel College, Oxford, at which several Massa- 
chusetts men had studied. But the wilderness does not favor intel- 


lectual culture. The Emanuel men eventually passed away, and a 
colony-born generation took their places. Neither here nor elsewhere 
was actual education higher than in a good modern prepar- 
atory school. The colleges, like other features of American , ^^"^'^~ 
life, began low and developed slowly out of their own ex- 
perience. The very conditions around them made them in colonial 
times but large academies, but they have gradually lifted themselves 
out of these conditions. 

The southern and middle colonies had a few public schools, but 
private schools were widely established. Often they were taught by 
clergymen. In the towns, as Philadelphia and New York, 
schools were early established. In the South the planters S(,^ools ^ 
cooperated in supporting schools for their own children. 
The subjects taught were elementary. The elements of Latin and 
Greek were given to those who sought to enter a college. How much 
this was may be seen in John Adams's entrance examination at Harvard 
in 1 7 5 1 . He was required to write a good hand and with the aid of a 
Latin grammar and dictionary to translate a piece of English into 

Cultured men were found in the colonies from the beginning. Prob- 
ably they were more numerous in the early years of a colony's history, 
because the contact with England was then closest. In the 
first fifty years of her existence Virginia saw the production c°i°^g 
of many books about her history ; in the second fifty years 
the output was smaller. The richest planters of Virginia, Maryland, 
and South Carolina educated their sons in England. Colonel William 
Byrd, of Virginia, a man of fine mental gifts, was trained in England 
and Holland, though not in a university, and spent many years in 
London, where he had some of the leading literary men for his 
associates. His old age he spent in Virginia, where he relieved the 
tedious hours by writing some of the sprightliest English prose that 
colonial America produced. Philadelphia was distinguished for a 
group of scientists, chief of whom were Franklin and James A. Logan. 
Boston was the center of an indigenous literary movement. It 
showed little immediate English influence and was, undoubtedly, the 
flowering of New England culture, nourished faithfully by Harvard 
and the congregational ministry. Several of the royal governors were 
notable friends of culture. But in this field we must not assert too 
much. Poets and essayists we had, and a few historians ; but they 
rarely rise into high rank. 

Local Government in the Colonies 

Three types of loyal government appeared in the English colonies ; 
the county, the town, and the mixed tyi^e. The first came with the 
settlement of Virginia and was an adaptation of the English county 


to Virginia conditions. The county was a unit of representation in the 
lower house of the assembly. Over it was a sheriff and a lieutenant- 
colonel of the militia. It had local justices of the peace 
The County. ^^^ were appointed by the governor and council, as a rule 
men of social and political prominence. They held the county court 
of quarter sessions, which was both an administrative and judicial 
body. In the former capacity it supervised the roads, apportioned 
taxes, cared for county property, and looked after any general business 
relating to the county. As a court it tried minor cases, although few 
justices were lawyers. Sheriff, lieutenant-colonel, and clerk of the 
court were generally appointed by the governor. In the southern 
county, as normally organized, the only elective ofhce was member 
of the assembly. He was chosen by the freeholders, all meeting at one 
voting precinct, the ballot being viva voce. Under such conditions 
the governor with the council had great power. He selected the 
county officials from the leading families, and they usually controlled 
the election of assemblyman, who in turn became the governor's ad- 
viser as to the further appointment of county officials. The ofiice- 
holding oligarchy of a southern county was an aristocratic influence, 
genuinely English in character, usually honest and efficient, and of 
sound American principles, as the local history of the revolutionary 
era shows. 

The New England town was a revival of the early English town, 
which for centuries had survived in the English parish, both a civil and 
an ecclesiastical institution. The fundamental idea was 
E^^^d^ that the business of the town should be transacted in 
Town. town meeting by all the qualified freemen. In earliest 

New England these were the persons of good standing in 
the town church; but as the king objected to the exclusion of An- 
glicans from the suffrage, it was provided that any person of good 
character could be admitted to the suffrage on the certificate of a min- 
ister. This rule, discretely administered, relieved pressure from the 
exclusion of Anglicans, but left the control of town affairs safely 
within the church. The town meeting levied the taxes, appointed 
selectmen who executed its rules, chose subordinate officers, and 
supervised roads, bridges, and public property. Any voter might 
speak in town meeting ; but it was part of the genius of the people to 
respect the advice of the elders. The minister had great influence in 
town affairs, the selectmen were the men of wealth and prominence, 
and between the two the direction of local affairs was in as restricted a 
group as in the South. Here, too, it must be said that the oligarchy 
ruled well. It was honest, patriotic, and economical, and it gave 
satisfaction to the majority. 

The mixed form first appears in New York. When NicoUs con- 
quered New Amsterdam, eastern Long Island was settled by New 
Englanders, who had never acknowledged the right of the Dutch over 


them. They had bought their lands from the Indians, established 
town meetings without authority from any superior, and desired to go 
on as they had begun. As they had helped NicoUs 
against Stuyvesant he could not ignore their request. "^^^ Mixed 
Neither could he grant it ; for the Duke of York meant to lqc^qo^. 
rule his province by absolute right, so far as he could. The emment. 
result was a compromise which the Long Islanders accepted 
with disappointment. NicoUs prepared a code of laws on the basis of 
the enactments of the assemblies at Boston and New Haven and pro- 
claimed it as law for the Long Island towns, where it was known as the 
"Duke Laws." It provided that the town administration be in the 
hands of overseers and constables elected by freeholders, but there 
was to be no town meeting. Local justice was to be administered, as 
in the South, by judges appointed by the governor. In a few years the 
"Duke's Laws" were extended to the rest of the province. In 
NicoUs's time there was no legislature. When it later came into 
existence, the county, made up by a union of several towns, became the 
basis of representation. Thus we have a system of counties divided 
into towns, or townships, imitated in the other middle colonies, and 
largely reproduced in the newer states of the union. Indeed, its ad- 
vantages are so obvious that it has since the civil war been adopted in 
modified forms in the Southern states. 

Paper Money in the Colonies 

Until the end of the seventeenth century specie was the money 
generally used throughout the world, but shortly before that time it 
had been discovered that a state's promise to pay might be 
made to serve as currency, although no country had used '^^® Cause 
the invention extensively. To issue bills which might be of'paner*^ 
paid back to the government for taxes and then destroyed Money, 
seemed a wonderful idea, and it was destined to be tried 
on a large scale in the colonies, where neither gold nor silver was 
mined, and where there was always a demand for money to develop 
the abundant natural resources. The idea was seductive, but it ig- 
nored the fundamental law that the volume of currency should be 
nearly stable in proportion to population. To increase it by a new issue 
would undoubtedly aid the debtors temporarily, but it worked a 
counteracting hardship to the capitalists, and to contract it would in- 
jure the borrowers while it benefited the capitalists. As the majority 
of people were not lenders they were continually asking for more paper 
money, once they learned of its effects, and they generally protested 
loudly against attempts to reduce its volume. The capitalists, mer- 
chants, and town's people generally, continually opposed such cur- 
rency, and they had the support of the crown, which usually was 
tender of the interests of the trading class. Out of this opposition of 


purpose grew up in most of the colonies important political divisions 
which seriously affected the people's loyalty to the mother country. 

The first colony to have paper money was Massachusetts. In 
1690 an unsuccessful expedition against Quebec left the treasury in 
debt and to pay it off notes were issued and made receivable 
Massa- fgj- public dues. In the wars that followed and lasted until 

Leads the ^^® French were driven out of Canada there were many 
Way. similar issues, so that by 1745 a silver dollar was worth 

eleven dollars in currency. Other New England colonies 
had followed the example set them, and the whole country was over- 
whelmed with depreciated paper. The ruling classes, chiefly in the 
seacoast towns, were dismayed at the situation, and when parliament 
voted 175,000 pounds sterling to repay Massachusetts for her expenses 
in the expedition which took Louisburg, 1745, they were able to get a vote 
passed for the redemption of the outstanding notes at the rate of seven 
and a half for one. After that the currency of the colony was specie. 
Massachusetts's lead in issuing paper currency was followed in most 
of the other colonies, Virginia being the most conspicuous opponent of 
the paper money system; and even she yielded in 1755. 
Colonies '^^^ largest issues were in Rhode Island, New Jersey, Penn- 
sylvania, and the Carolinas. In these colonies the de- 
mand for currency became a veritable fiat money craze. Bills were 
printed and lent to individuals on the security of lands and commodi- 
ties. Sometimes it was issued by the public direct and sometimes 
through corporations on a very slender basis of specie. Virginia's 
reluctance to employ this kind of money was not so much due to cor- 
rect ideas of finance as to her habit of using tobacco for currency. 
Tobacco when not sold immediately was deposited in public ware- 
houses, and the certificates received by the depositors were transferred 
to other persons in payment of debt or for trade. 

The protests of the merchants against the payment of debts in 
colonial paper soon reached the ears of the British government. 
Accordingly, colonial governors were instructed to allow 
Efforts of \}^Q passage of no more acts authorizing paper money, 
to^Check^ and sometimes those already passed were vetoed in Eng- 
the Craze. land. But the governors were not always able to obey their 
instructions without arousing more resistance than they 
cared to encounter. During the last struggle with France, 1754 to 
1763, the colonies took the plausible ground that they could not fur- 
nish troops in aid of the war unless they be allowed to issue more 
paper money, and when this argument was insisted upon it usually 
prevailed. The irritation occasioned by the efforts of the crown to 
check paper money weakened the respect of the people for the British 
government, and was a powerful factor in preparing them for participa- 
tion in the revolution. It also opened the way for the flood of public 
notes which inundated the country as soon as independence was declared. 



General social conditions in the colonies are described with commendable fullness 
in Channing, History of the United States, 3 vols. (1907-1912); Andrews, 
Colonial Self-Goveniment (1904); Greene, Provincial America (1905); and Doyle, 
English Colonies in America, 5 vols. (1882-1907). On special sections or colonies 
see: Weeden, Economic and Social History of New England, 2 vols. (1896) ; Bruce, 
Economic History of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century, 2 vols. (1896); Ibid., 
Institutional History of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century, 2 vols. (1910) ; 
Ibid., Social History of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century (1907) ; William Byrd, 
Writings of (ed. 1901), the introduction, by J. S. Bassett, presents a history of 
the Byrd family with its various industrial, social, and political activities ; McCrady, 
South Carolina under Royal Government (1899). 

On conditions of labor see : McCormac, White Servitude in Maryland (Johns 
Hopkins Studies, 1904) ; Ballagh, White Servitude in Virginia (Ibid., 1895) ; Bassett, 
Servitude and Slavery in the Colony of North Carolina (Ibid., 1896) ; Geiser, Redemp- 
tioners and Indented Servants in Pennslyvania (Supplement to Vale Review, 1901); 
Brackett, The Negro in Maryland (1889); Ballagh, Slavery in Virginia (1902); 
Weeks, Soutlwrn Quakers and Slavery (1896) ; Du Bois, Suppression of the African 
Slave Trade (1896) ; and Channing, Narragansett Planters (Johns Hopkins Studies, 

Books of travel are: Kalm, Travels in North America (trans. 1770, and later 
eds.), by a Swede who visited the colonies in 1749-1750; Madam Knight, Journal, 
1704-1705 (ed. 1825, 1865), relates chiefly to New England; Whitefield, Journal 
of a Voyage from London to Savannah [1737-1738] (1739); and Keith, Travels 
from New Hampshire to Caratuck (1706, 1851), warmly Anghcan and bitter against 
dissenters. A most valuable contemporary source is Samuel Sewall, Diary, 1674- 
1729 (Mass. Hist. Soc. Collections, sth ser. V-VII). 

See also : Dunton, Letters from New England, 1686 (Prince Society Publications, 
1867); .^Isop, Character of the Province of Maryland (1666, 1903); Hammond, 
Lea-h and Rachael, or the Two Fruitful Sisters, Virginia and Maryland (1656) ; 
Wilson, Account of the Province of Carolina (in Carroll, Hist. Collections, 2 vols. 
(1836); Ashe, Carolina, a Description of the Present State of the Country (Ibid.), 
both Wilson and Ashe deal with South Carolina; Denton, Brief Description of 
New York (1670, 1903) ; IMiller, Description of the Province and City of New York 
(1695; 1903); Wolley, Two Years' Journal (1701, 1902); Thomas, Historical and 
Geographical Account of West New Jersey and Pcnsilvania (1698, 1903) ; and 
Budd, Good Order Established in Pennsylvania and Neiv Jersey (1685, 1902). 

For race element see: Kuhns, German and Swiss Settlements of Colonial Penn- 
sylvania (1901), with a bibliography; Bernheim, German Settlements in North 
and South Carolina (1872); Fries, The Moravians in Georgia and North Carolina 
(1905); Green, Scotch-Irish in America (Am. Antiqu. Soc. Proceedings, vol. X), 
a good essay; and Baird, Huguenot Emigration to America, 2 vols. (1885), good 
for genealogical purposes. 

On religious conditions : Cross, The A nglican Episcopate and the A merican Colonies 
{Harvard Studies, 1902) ; Anderson, The Church of England in the Colonies, 3 vols, 
(ed. 1856); Perry, History of the American Episcopal Church, 2 vols. (1885); W. 
Walker, Ten New England Leaders (1901) ; Dexter, Congregationalism as Seen in 
Its Literature (1880) ; Lauer, Church and State in New England (Johns Hopkins 
Studies, 1892) ; Backus, History of New England with Particular Reference to the 
Baptists (ed. 1871); Checkley; Evolution of Religious Tolerance in Massachusetts 
Bay, 2 vols. (1897); Upham, Solemn Witchcraft, 2 vols. (1876), to be read with 
Poole's criticism {N. Am. Rev. CVIII) ; and Tracey, The Great Awakening (1842). 

Intellectual and educational development are described in : Tyler, History of 
American Literature, 1607-1765, 2 vols. (ed. 1897); Thomas, History of Printing 
(Am. Antiqu. Soc. Archccologia Americana, 1874); Trent, American Literature 
(1903), a short manual; Quincy, History of Harvard University, 2 vols. (ed. i860); 


Dexter, Sketch of the History of Yale University (1887) ; Kingsley, Yale College^ 
2 vols. (i87q) ; Adams, The College of William and Mary (U. S. Bureau of Edu- 
cation, Circulars, 1887); and Thwing, History of Higher Education in America 

On the colonial local government: Osgood, The American Colonies in the 
Seventeenth Century, 3 vols. (1904-1907) ; Mereness, Maryland as a Proprietary 
Province (1901) ; Howard, Local Constitutional History, vol. I (1889); Channing, 
Town and County Government in the English Colonies (Johns Hopkins Studies, 
1884) ; and Greene, The Provincial Governor (Harvard Studies, 1898). 

For Independent Reading 

YxdinkXm, Autobiography (many eds.) ; Mrs. Earle, Sabbath in Puritan New England 
(1891) ; Fisher, Men, Women, and Manners in Colonial Times (1898) ; Wendell, 
Cotton Mather, the Puritan Priest (1891) ; Allen, Jonathan Edwards (1889) ; and 
Eliza Lucas, Journals and Letters (1850), on South Carolina matters. 



The Principles at Stake 

When the British government was about to make peace with 
France in 1763, it was suggested that the French hold Canada as a 
restraint on the colonies. The suggestion brought forth 
a pamphlet from Franklin in which he said the colonies p^^^^ 
would not desire independence if they were treated fairly. 
Pitt accepted his argument but was out of office before the treaty 
was concluded. Bute, his successor, grasped at Canada, but forgot 
all about Franklin's stipulation that the colonies be treated fairly. 
In fact, if we interpret his policy in the way which seems most justi- 
fiable, he was bent on holding Canada and making British authority 
sufficiently energetic to deal with whatever spirit of self-assertion 
America might manifest. He meant that the colonies should con- 
tribute to the commercial support of England, that the king's 
prerogative should have ample scope in colonial administration, and 
that parliament should exercise the right to lay taxes on the colonists. 
That the colonists should consider this treatment fair was impossible ; 
that they should find legal arguments in opposition to it was natural. 
Had the British government been in the hands of wise and well- 
informed men, the crisis of 1763-17 76 might have been avoided, which 
does not, however, mean that it would not have come later. 

But the government acted on a basis of strict legality. It was 
legal for parliament to legislate in any way it saw fit ; it was legal 
for the crown to exercise its prerogative in the veto of 
laws ; it was legal for the royal governors to interfere in ^^^' ^^^^ 
many ways with the growth of colonial self-government ; yg^ poUcy. 
and finally it was legal for England to impose the navi- 
gation laws on the colonies and to exploit the children's labor for 
maternal prosperity. These things had been done until they had 
all the sanction of precedent. Moreover, the Englishman thought 
them reasonable. Of all the moderns he is least liable to take other 
people into consideration. A few statesmen have proved an excep- 
tion to this rule, but George III, Lord Bute, and the existing cabinet 
were not of the number. Those who directed English colonial affairs 
in 1763 knew little of that better art of government by which the 
mind of the governed is as much respected as the interests of the 
governing class. 

M 161 


The colonies were developing rapidly in numbers and in ideals. 
In twenty-five years the population had doubled, and with greater 
strength came greater confidence in the future ; and they naturally 
felt disposed to demand a clearer definition of their relation to the 
British government. This was difficult because of two apparently 
conflicting principles which had hitherto been considered binding. 
One was that the colonists had all the fundamental rights of English- 
men. Under this they believed themselves entitled to the benefits 

of Magna Charta, the Habeas Corpus Acts, and such 
Two Con- other great statements of personal liberty as the Bill of 
Principles. Rights of 1689. There was no disposition in England 

to deny this claim in its abstract form, but the applica- 
tion given it by the Americans was disputed. From English expe- 
rience the colonists also deduced the clear right of "no taxation without 
representation," a principle at the bottom of every great English 
reform of the preceding two centuries. The other principle related 
to the power of parliament to legislate for the colonies. From time 
immemorial Englishmen have held parliament absolute in regard 
to the scope of its authority. No colonial charter ever dealt with 
the matter explicitly ; but in most of them the assembly was given 
the right to make such laws as did not conflict with the laws of England. 
It had come about that the assemblies dealt with local matters and 
had nothing to do with afifairs involving the empire, such as external 
commerce, the regulation of money, and the collection of debts due 
to British subjects. To see that this principle was not violated, the 

king insisted on the right to veto colonial statutes, although 
i^^!?'^d'°^' ^'^ England his veto of an act of parliament was long 
the Colonies since abandoned. The colonists could not but look on 

this as a wrong. Their own view of their rights was that 
a colonial assembly was in a small way another parliament, guardian 
of popular rights and liberties, and ruling its colony as formerly the 
Scottish parliament ruled Scotland under British supervision. They 
did not in general dispute the authority of parliament to legislate for 
the colonies ; but they resented the exercise of the right in a very 
vital way. Never did a more perplexing problem of imperial 
federation and home rule arise in British political history; and 
in 1763 England was not ready for it. 

Grenville's Policy 

The men into whose hands the problem fell were George III and 
George Grenville. The former had been three years king, and had 

just got the reins of government firmly in his hands. 

The power of Newcastle and Pitt displeased him, and 
he drove them out of office by combining under his patronage all who 
had a grudge against either. The war was popular with the country 


and enhanced Pitt's influence with the people. The king, therefore, 
hastened to make a peace which many EngHshmen regarded as a 
sacrifice of national interests. The obloquy of it fell on Bute, the 
tool who formulated the terms of peace, and he was forced out of 
ofhce. But George III would yield nothing to the old whig party. 
He made Grenville prime minister, and by favor and flattery consoli- 
dated a parliamentary majority in his support. From that time his 
purpose was to rule England. He knew little of the colonies and would 
not have distressed them capriciously. But his love of prerogative 
was a ruling passion, and once it was questioned by the Americans, 
his stubborn nature would risk much in its support. 

Walpole and Newcastle had paid little attention to the colonies ; 
Grenville, more conscientious and more given to detail, not only gave 
them attention, but prepared a definite scheme involving _ . 
their relation to the empire. The national debt was exorbi- 
tant, 140,000,000 pounds, and much of it grew out of the late war, 
fought in behalf of the colonies. To protect the empire a large fleet 
and a standing army were necessary. To Grenville, logical and prosaic 
statesman, it seemed the most natural of conclusions that the colonies, 
a part of the empire, should share this imperial burden. He did not 
think of the practical difflculties before him, nor did he stop to look 
at the matter from the colonists' standpoint. His conclusion was 
made, and three measures were devised to carry it into effect. The 
situation was well summed up in the remark of a treasury official that, 
"Grenville lost America because he read the American dispatches, 
which none of his predecessors had done." 

The first of these three momentous acts provided for the strict 

enforcement of the navigation and customs laws in America. On 

examination Grenville learned that the duties, paid in 

America did not exceed 2000 pounds a year, and that it I: ^^^*sa- 

lion l> to 
cost nearly 8000 pounds a year to collect this sum. Smug- jjg Enforced. 

gling existed on a large scale, and he proposed to break 
it up. Ships-of-war were sent to patrol the American coasts, rigid 
instructions were given to the resident customs officials, and delin- 
quents in ofl5ce were replaced by men who seemed more trustworthy. 
In 1764 the "molasses act" of 1733, which had been generally violated 
with the connivance of the government, was revived and enlarged 
by the addition of coffee, Spanish and Portuguese wines, and several 
other less important articles. Thus on the chief articles which 
New England received in return for her fish, lumber, staves, and 
food products sold in French and Spanish colonies, such duties must 
be paid as would practically annihilate the trade. The effects of 
this would be more far-reaching than Grenville could have known. 
Besides furs. New England and the middle colonies exported little 
to England, which did not take their flour, lumber, staves, and cheaper 
fish ; and yet they bought English merchandise heavily. As a result, 


there was a large annual balance against them for which they paid 
from the cash proceeds of the trade to the islands. Take from them 
the French and Spanish parts of this trade, and not only would colonial 
industry suffer, but English merchants would find American orders 
restricted and American merchants would be hopelessly involved 
in debts to their British creditors. The act of 1764, therefore, with 
the stricter revenue regulations accompanying it, brought consterna- 
tion not only to the smugglers but to all the colonial merchants. 

The second measure concerned an army. Grenville decided to 
maintain 10,000 men in the American colonies and announced that the 
duties arising from the act just mentioned would defray 
2. A British one-third of the expense. The other two-thirds he would 
Africa. have the king pay. This measure was justified on the 
ground that the troops were needed to defend the colonies 
against foreign attack. To the Americans it seemed that the soldiers 
were designed to overawe them, to support the collection of customs, 
and to nip in the bud any plans which might be made to support 
the colonies in their contention for what they considered their rights. 
And they asked with much pertinence why, if protection were needed, 
it had not been sent earlier, when French and Indians were a real 
menace? To this question no satisfactory answer has been given 
by those who see in Grenville's second measure merely a precaution 
against foreign dangers. 

The third measure was a stamp act. It was not offered in 1764, 
but Grenville introduced, and parliament passed, a resolution declaring 
that it might be proper to enact it. A protest came at 
Stamn Act once from every colonial agent in London, to which Gren- 
ville replied by saying that the colonies must assume a 
part of the military burden, that a stamp tax was easily laid and 
collected, but that he would be pleased to consider any better scheme 
of raising the money if the colonies would suggest it. He intimated 
that by seizing this opportunity the colonists might make a precedent 
for giving money to the crown only when previously consulted by 
the ministry. A little reflection showed that this was impracticable 
unless the colonies should first adopt some satisfactory form of 
authoritative cooperation in apportioning their respective shares of 
a contribution and in devising the means of raising the funds. 

News of Grenville's measures aroused the apprehension of all the 
colonists, but it created consternation among the traders of New 
England. A Boston town meeting declared: "There is 
Connies ^° room for further delay. . . . These unexpected pro- 
ceedings may be preparatory to new taxations upon us ; 
for if our trade may be taxed, why not our lands? Why not the 
produce of our lands, and everything else we possess ? " In this way the 
commercial class endeavored to make the rural classes see that the 
cause of one was the cause of all. It was a peculiarly opportune 


time for such agitation ; for New England was then in commotion 
over a proposition, urged by the Anghcans in England and in the 
colonies, for the creation of an American bishopric. Such a step 
could not but strengthen the position of that church, lead to the 
enlargement of its membership, and promote its wider 
influence in political affairs. New England was especially ^^^s^'^*^ 
opposed to such a step, her ministers, the most influential 
class of her people, were debating the question in every town, and 
to the alarms they thus felt was now added the feeling that parlia- 
ment was asserting the right to tax Americans at will. The fact 
that Grenville's policy bore more hardly on New England than on 
other sections may explain why it was that the first steps of the 
revolution were taken by her people. 

In July, 1764, was published in Boston James Otis's "Rights of 
the British Colonists Asserted and Proved." The author was the 
most advanced of what was to become the revolutionary 
group, and his pamphlet may be taken as a statement of Position of 
the constitutional views of the most extreme Americans. Americans. 
In it is no advocacy of independence. Could the colonists 
choose, he said, they would prefer the status of British subjects to 
independence, unless the former condition involved absolute slavery 
to England. The right of parliament to make laws for the 
general good of the colonies was admitted, but to allow it the right 
to tax American trade was to say it might tax any form of American 
property. In England a distinction had laeen made between " external " 
and "internal" ta.xes : Otis rejected the distinction, saying taxes 
were taxes, wherever collected. For remedy he suggested that the 
colonies should have representation in parliament "in some proportion 
to their number and estates." Already the cry had been raised, 
"Taxation without representation is tyranny." 

Two objections may be made to these arguments. One is that 
they were always overstated. The patriots talked about "British 
tyranny," and declared that they were about to be "re- 
duced from the character of free subjects to the miserable ^.^t^ns' 
state of tributary slaves." Such lurid phrases must 
have been unconvincing to the British ministry, on whose good will 
depended an exit from the existing confusions. Moreover, these 
arguments lacked that self-restrained dignity which thoughtful 
men admire. The cause of the patriots was a good one. The rela- 
tion of the colonies to England was threatened with a precedent 
full of possible future calamity, but it was not likely to be removed 
by calling names. The second objection is that the suggestion of 
colonial representation was impractical. If it had been adopted, 
the Americans would have had very little influence in parliament, 
and they could not have prevented taxation of the colonies. This 
was so apparent that the demand was soon dropped by the Americans. 


By the spring of 1765 Grenville knew the views of the colonists 
on a stamp tax. Instead of suggesting any other method of contrib- 
uting to the burden of empire they had given unmis- 
A^t^p*^™d takable evidence of repudiation of all British taxes. 
j„5g^ ' Determined to have the revenue, which he thought essen- 
tially just, he now brought in the stamp act, and like the 
revised "molasses act" of 1764, it passed parliament without serious 
challenge. It required stamps on all legal and commercial documents, 
bonds, insurance policies, and newspapers, the proceeds to be expended 
exclusively on the colonies. Offenses against the act were to be tried 
by admiralty courts in America or in England, and Grenville proposed 
to appoint only Americans as agents to distribute the stamps. He 
wished to soften the execution of the law as much as possible, and he 
thought the colonists would accept it calmly after a brief state of 

When news of these proceedings came to America there was a 
storm of protests. The memorials of colonial assemblies to parlia- 
ment were not received by it, the vote in the House of 
inAmericT Lords was unanimous for the tax, and in the commons 
it was 205 to 49. Truly it seemed that the wishes of the 
children were despised by the mother. One notable speech had been 
made against the bill in the commons by Colonel Isaac Barre, who 
fervently praised the Americans as "Sons of Liberty." The phrase 
was taken up in America, and bands of "Sons of Liberty" were soon 
organized to express the popular disapproval. 

But the outburst did not come at once. For some weeks after the 
act was known to have passed there was a stupefied feeling of outrage, 
but no one suggested a means of action. The man who 
Patrick ^qqJj^ j-^g initiative in protest was Patrick Henry, a Vir- 

Resoiutions. gi^ia lawyer of Scotch ancestry, who in 1763 had made 
himself the popular hero in a Presbyterian community 
by his wonderful speech in the celebrated "Parson's cause." He 
was now a member of the Virginia house of burgesses, but was dis- 
trusted for his extreme views by the old and experienced leaders of 
the body. To the consternation of the latter, he introduced resolu- 
tions condemnatory of the stamp act, in which he claimed for Virginians 
the exclusive right of taxing themselves in their own assembly. The 
leaders of the aristocratic East had hitherto been masters of the house, 
and they considered the young backwoodsman's resolutions too 
extreme. After a hot debate he carried the day by a close majority. 
It was here that he made the famous utterance : "Tarquin and Caesar 
each had his Brutus ; Charles the First his Cromwell ; and George 
the Third" — [from the speaker and others, "Treason ! Treason !"] 
— "may profit by their example. If this be treason, make the most 
of it." Having won the victory, Henry departed for his home, and 
his opponents, taking advantage of his absence, carried a motion 


to expunge the most significant words of his resolutions. But the 
effect was not what they intended. Henry's words had aroused 
Virginia, and his original resolutions were printed everywhere and no 
notice taken of the expunging action of the conservatives. Henry 
became a conspicuous leader in the struggle then beginning. As 
governor of the state and as counsellor among the revolutionists 
his work was hardly more than ordinary, but in the task of arousing 
public sentiment by means of burning and exaggerated descriptions 
of colonial wrongs he was unequalled in the South. James Otis, 
of Boston, was his counterpart in the North. Each played his part 
in the drama about to open. 

The popular indignation was general, and associations of "Sons 
of Liberty" were formed in every colony. They found leaders as 
fervent as Henry and Otis, intimidated the stamp agents, . 
and forced them to resign, in many places employing Foru^ng, 
violence. In Boston the mob destroyed a building which 
they thought was to be the stamp office, and pillaged and wrecked 
the residence of Chief Justice Hutchinson. Defenders of the crown 
were now denounced as "tories" while friends of the colonies were 
called "whigs." But the "Sons of Liberty" were only a part of the 
whigs ; for there were in America many conservatives who opposed 
taxation by parliament but who did not participate in the demon- 
strations of the radicals. At this time no one openly advocated 

The hope of the conservatives was in appeal to the crown, and for 
that purpose, at the suggestion of Massachusetts, the Stamp Act 
congress met at New York, October 7, 1765. Delegates 
came from all the colonies but New Hampshire, Virginia, ^tamp Act 
North Carolina, and Georgia, and from these came mA. ^>j/ ^ 
unofiEicial messages of encouragement. The result was ^^ 
petitions to king and parliament and a declaration of the rights of 
Americans. In the latter we have the first statement of a purpose 
common to all the colonies. The congress repudiated the notion 
that the colonies should have parliamentary representation as impos- 
sible "from local circumstances," and it admitted the right of parlia- 
ment to make general and trade laws in reference to the colonies, 
but denied its authority to lay taxes. The right of taxation, said the 
delegates, was a sacred right of Englishmen, guaranteed to all the 
colonists in their charters, and on it they stood. After the congress 
adjourned committees of correspondence, formed as an afterthought 
through the suggestion of New York whigs, took up the 
question of trade reprisal. Thus were made non-impor- potation 
tation and non-consumption agreements, which secured 
wide acceptance by the people. "Touching the pocket nerve," 
as this course was called, was sensibly felt by the British merchants, 
who signed many memorials for the repeal of the stamp act. 


The state of affairs in America was well known in England when 
parliament met, December 17, 1765, and it was evident that the 
objectionable measure must be executed by force or 
Repeal of repealed. For the former course neither king nor people 
^pj_ were ready. The latter was made easier by the recent 

retirement of the Grenville ministry for causes not 
connected with its colonial policy. The first sign of retraction was 
when inquiry was made to know if the colonies would be satisfied 
if the stamp act were "moderated." Franklin, agent for Penn- 
sylvania, was interrogated on this point at the bar of the house of 
commons, and declared that nothing but absolute repeal would be 
accepted by the colonies. Asked if there were no means by which 
they would erase their resolutions against parliamentary taxation, 
he answered, "None that I know of; they will never do it unless 
compelled by force of arms." Pitt, who was ill when the act passed, 
now took the floor for repeal. Twitted by Grenville for encouraging 
the Americans to defy England, he exclaimed : "I rejoice that America 
has resisted. Three millions of people so dead to all the feelings 
of liberty, as voluntarily to submit to be slaves, would have been 
fit instruments to make slaves of the rest." He urged the repeal 
of the stamp act, but favored a strong assertion of the authority of 
parliament to "bind their trade, confine their manufactures, and 
exercise every power whatsoever, except that of taking their money 
out of their pockets without their consent." The outcome was that 
March 18 a repeal bill was signed by the king. At the same time 
passed the "declaratory act," an explicit statement that parliament 
could rightfully make laws for "the colonies and people of America, 
subjects of the crown of Great Britain, in all cases whatsoever. ^^ 

In America a few stamps had been sold in South Carolina and 
Georgia : in all the other colonies the law was not executed in the 
four and a half months it was formally in force. November 
Stamp Act a j^ \\-yQ (\^y get for the beginning of its enforcement, was 
b i 'ts*^'^ ushered in with the tolling of bells, and processions marched 
Repeal. through the chief towns to bury or burn the stamp act. 

In Connecticut the stamps themselves were seized and 
burned. In North Carolina the governor found his house surrounded 
by more than 700 Sons of Liberty, who did not go away until the 
stamp agent resigned and with other officers swore not to attempt 
to enforce the odious act. When this situation began, business 
came to a standstill. No one dared accept an unstamped instrument, 
and no ship could get stamped clearance papers. But with the 
triumph of the protestants courage came to the timid ones and business 
went on as before in disregard of the stamp act. 

From such confusions the colonies were thrown into joy by the 
news of repeal. The bells now rang another tune, liberty poles 
were erected, and the health of the king was drunk in every kind 


of tipple from the rum of the laboring man to the punch and Madeira 
of the wealthy merchant. Virginia ordered a statue of the king 
and New York ordered statues of both the king and 
Pitt. In Philadelphia the substantial citizens gave their r!!!^*^"^^** 
homespun clothes to the poor and appeared in handsome 
suits of British cloth. In their excitement the colonists thought 
little of the declaratory act, the Sons of Liberty dissolved as a 
society, and every thought of resisting the mother country dis- 

Growing Irritation 

Popular rejoicings did not last long ; for spite of the repeal of the 
stamp act the colonists and the king were wide apart in principle. 
In New York was a large detachment of regulars who 
by a parliamentary billeting act of 1765 were to be fur- Rgo "^d'^ 
nished with quarters by the colony. When the matter 
was laid before the assembly a partial refusal was obtained and trouble 
began, with the result that in 1767 the assembly was suspended until 
it complied with the law. In Massachusetts the governor blundered 
into a quarrel when he demanded of the assembly compensation 
for the sufferers through the stamp act riots. Objection was made 
to the demand, as well as to a call for supplies for the garrison under 
the billeting act. Next the governor vetoed the election of James 
Otis as speaker of the assembly. There was much bickering, but a 
compromise was effected. Old quarrels might have been forgotten 
if Charles Townshend had not been at the head of the British ministry. 
His first prominent appearance in colonial affairs was in 1763, when 
he was first lord of trade in Bute's cabinet. He then formulated 
a plan to remodel the colonial government on a uniform scale, to 
enforce the acts of trade, and to use the revenue raised in America 
to support an army and civil establishment at the will of the crown. 
The scheme was more thoroughgoing than that inaugurated by 
Grenville, but it passed out of sight with the fall of the Bute ministry. 

Townshend did not forget it, and when through the fall of the 
Rockingham ministry in 1766 he became head of the exchequer 
he returned to his older policy. Without the support 
of his colleagues in the cabinet he announced that he ^^^V^T^' 
would bring in a bill to raise in the colonies the money ^^^^ * 
to support an army in America, a bill, he said, which 
would have the approval of the Americans themselves. Had the 
cabinet been a strong one, he would probably have been forced to 
resign ; but Pitt, now Earl of Chatham, was ill, and Grafton, the 
nominal head, was weak-willed, and Townshend was allowed to pro- 
ceed in the course he mapped out. In May, 1767, he secured the 
passage of three acts relating to America. In one, duties were laid on 
tea, glass, red and white lead, and paper. The colonists had admitted 


the legality of external taxes, and such was the kind now laid. But 
as the revenue from the five articles named would not be more than 
£40,000, this act was inadequate to the support of an army, for which 
ten times that much was necessary. . It was designed, it seems, for 
a precedent, to be followed by a much wider list of taxable articles. 
To secure larger revenues immediately he carried through a law 
creating a board of commissioners to supervise the execution of the 
navigation acts in America ; and as this would likely lead to commo- 
tions, he got a third bill passed as a warning to any colony which 
disputed the parliamentary act to billet soldiers. It suspended the 
New York assembly for its recent refusal to furnish supplies at the 
demand of the governor. The blow fell heavily on that province, 
in which were many tories, and in 1769 the assembly yielded and was 
restored to full vigor. The Townshend acts were carried through 
parliament without serious difficulty. The landed interest controlled 
both houses and were pleased to throw off their own shoulders any 
part of the heavy burden of taxation. To them the colonies seemed 
ungrateful and rebellious children, for whom a little parental sternness 
would be good. The king fully approved the sentiment. Recalling 
now the prophecy of 1762 it seems well to say that England lost the 
colonies, not because Canada was no longer French, but because 
the mother country thought that the time was come to take them 
into a stricter control than had hitherto been exercised over them. 
Whatever might have happened later, the American revolution came, 
when it did come, as the result of events which England, and not the 
colonies, initiated. 

The colony most affected by trade restrictions was Massachusetts, 
and she was the first to move in protest. The assembly had a good 

leader in Samuel Adams, who was the author of several 
Protests protests of the assembly to king and parliament. He 

also wrote a circular letter which the assembly sent to 
the other colonies, suggesting that cooperation was essential in a 
cause that touched all the continent. Most of the colonies revived 

the non-importation agreement ; but the state of feeling 
^^™-^^*™^ differed from that of 1765 in that it was less vociferous. 
Dickinson. There were no riots, and the conservative whigs played 

a larger part. This feeling was well expressed by John 
Dickinson, of Pennsylvania, in his "Farmer's Letters." He declared 
that a most serious crisis was on the country and urged that it be 
met in the spirit of prudence, bravery, and magnanimity. He 
set aside all thought of independence, saying, "Let us behave like 
dutiful children, who have received unmerited blows from a beloved 
parent." But he asserted that if England could tax American im- 
ports, she could tax in a prohibitive way the articles she did not wish 
the colonists to manufacture, and that done, he concluded, "the 
tragedy of American liberty is finished." From 1767 we hear little 


in America about the difference between "external" and "internal" 
taxes. Indeed, it was now freely asserted that England had no 
right to "legislate" for the colonies. 

Townshend died September 4, 1767, Lord North succeeded him 
as head of the exchequer, and Lord Hillsborough became secretary 
for the colonies, a new office of cabinet rank ; but the 
Townshend policy was not to be relaxed. When Hills- New Minis- 
borough saw the Massachusetts circular to the other col- oicTpolicy 
onies, he pronounced it seditious, and ordered the individ- 
ual governors to adjourn their respective assemblies, if notice was 
taken of it. To Governor Bernard, of Massachusetts, he sent a 
demand that the assembly should revoke the circular. In a secret 
session, by a vote of 92 to 17, the demand was refused, and an 
address was sent to Hillsborough in which it was said that the colony 
stood on the principles of the English revolution of 1689. All the 
colonies were now keenly alive to the situation, and Virginia, the 
oldest and largest, took a determined position by the side of the 
trading colonies of the North. When parliament knew of this it 
passed resolutions of censure on Massachusetts and suggested that 
the leaders of the whigs in America be sent to England for trial 
under an obsolete law of Henry VIII 's reign. This suggestion 
brought out a protest from every colony. From this time the con- 
troversy was probably beyond the possibility of compromise, although 
there remained in America many "who still hoped England would yield. 

Meanwhile the spirit of mob violence reappeared, its first out- 
break being in Boston, where it was impossible to enforce the revenue 
acts. In 1768, for example, a cargo of wine was landed 
without paying duty and carried boldly through the ^'^"(fg^tjfn"' 
streets under a guard of "stout fellows, armed with 
bludgeons," and the revenue officials were not rash enough to attempt 
a seizure. On the contrary, they asked that troops be sent to the 
town. The request was reasonable from the British point of view ; 
if the laws existed, they should be executed. So thought the govern- 
ment, and in September two regiments with artillery, about 1000 
men in all, landed in Boston. The people refused to submit to the 
billeting law on the ground that there was room for the troops in the 
barracks at Castle William. General Gage, commander-in-chief 
in the colonies, protested, but the soldiers had eventually to be placed 
in buildings hired at dear rentals. They had come to intimidate the 
town, and between them and the inhabitants relations were unpleasant 
from the beginning. 

For eighteen months officers and soldiers avoided serious conflict. 
They were criticized in the journals, flouted in the streets, 
and sometimes involved in personal conflict with the more r'^"^^ * 
violent townsmen. Nor were they always patient and 
considerate of the people. They raced horses on Sundays, played 


unseemly music near the meetinghouses during divine worship, and 
planted cannon to command the state house, in which the general 
court sat. In 1769 Otis was attacked by a revenue commissioner 
for an article in a newspaper and received a sword cut, from which he 
sank into insanity. Though the troops had nothing to do with the 
outrage, it produced high popular resentment for every British agent. 
Early in 1770 violent affrays became numerous. It is evident 
that the long residence of the soldiers in the town had given the 

more radical leaders a text for agitation, and it may 
Bloodshed j^g ^^iSit the populace had reached a point of excitement 
'" °^ °°' beyond the control of the leaders. In February a wooden 

image appeared over the door of a shop whose keeper 
flouted non-importation, and a mob interfered when a friend tried 
to remove it. Thereupon the friend fired into the crowd, killing a 
boy. At the victim's funeral 500 children walked in front of the 
remains and 1300 persons followed them to the grave. Such an 
outburst of sympathy shows how well the whig side was controlled 
by its leaders. March 5, 1770, came a more serious affair. Two 
soldiers were attacked and beaten by townsmen, and an ugly spirit 

was aroused. The bells were rung, a large crowd gathered, 
The and a sentinel in front of the customhouse was attacked. 

"Boston ^^ Captain Preston, officer of the day, with thirteen men, 
Marches ' went to his support. The mob was not intimidated. 
1770. ' They threw snow, shouted vile epithets, and cried: "Fire 

if you dare, fire and be damned ! We know you dare 
not !" The soldiers behaved well until one of them, struck with a 
stick, discharged his musket without orders. The mob rushed for- 
ward to take him, but fell back when several other muskets were 
fired. Drums were beat and all the troops in Boston seized arms 
to repel a general attack. At this point the governor appeared, and 
by his appeals induced the angry citizens to disperse. At the first 
shot, Crispus Attucks, a mulatto, was slain, and subsequently four 
others were killed and six were wounded. Preston and several of 
the soldiers were indicted for murder, John Adams and Josiah Quincy 
appearing as their counsel. All were acquitted but two, who, con- 
victed of manslaughter, pleaded benefit of clergy and escaped with 
branding on the hand. The day after the shooting a town meeting 
was held under the leadership of Samuel Adams and John Hancock. 
The latter was a rich merchant and many times a smuggler. 
Before their determined protest the governor yielded, and the soldiers 
were withdrawn from the town. The victims of the "Massacre," 
as the affair was called, were given a public funeral, and for a dozen 
years the anniversary of their death was observed in Boston. The 
incident, described in a pamphlet as the culminating act of British 
tyranny, had a marked influence on all the colonists. It was the kind 
of argument that the average citizen could understand. 


Meanwhile, events moved rapidly in England. The cabinet, 
now headed by Lord North, but delivered hand and foot to the will 
of the king, was surprised to find the revenues from 
America were only £295 more than the cost of collection j°^ 1770^* 
and to learn that extraordinary military expenses there 
were £170,000. For these results the government was creating 
the spirit of resistance in the colonies ; and although North declared 
in parliament that the Townshend acts ought not to be repealed "till 
we see America prostrate at our feet," it is certain that he and the 
king were anxious to escape from the situation without complete 
defeat. It was with this hope in mind that he announced on the day 
of the " Boston Massacre," March 5, 1770, a bill to repeal all the duties 
imposed by the Townshend acts, save that on tea, which was kept to 
maintain the rights of parliament. "The properest time to assert 
our right of taxation is when the right is refused," said he with a tone 
of confidence which must have been assumed for the occasion. For 
to make palatable the tax of threepence a pound he allowed a draw- 
back of nearly twelve pence a pound on the tea sent from England to 
America ; thus offering cheaper tea to the colonists than to the people 
of England. The law passed, and its financial effect was good. Co- 
lonial imports from Great Britain, which aggregated £2,378,000 in 
1768, and fell to £1,634,000 in 1769, rose to £4,200,000 in 1771. Non- 
importation was relaxed on all articles except tea, but public opinion 
in regard to that article was expressed in the formation of societies 
to refrain from tea-drinking. The issue between parliament and 
the colonies now appeared in a new form : the Grenville plan to 
tax America for revenue was given up, and in lieu of it was the king's 
plan to tax it on principle. 

At this stage we may take a glance at the general situation pro- 
duced by seven years of controversy, i. The colonial loyalty of 
1763 was gone, and instead were suspicion and bitterness. 
2. With it were mingled a feeling of self-confidence and view™'"*'^^ 
a conviction that England could not carry out the program 
she had undertaken. She had been obliged to confess failure in 
regard to the stamp act and the larger part of the Townshend duties ; 
and was to see the same result in regard to the tea duties. 3. The 
losing controversy provoked a spirit of bitterness between the royal 
officials in the colonies and leaders of the people there. The former 
felt impelled to assert their rights, and there were numerous incidents 
which they took for challenges. The colonials were equally stout- 
hearted, and in fiery appeals aroused the people on the one hand while 
they awakened the wrath of the officials on the other. Each side 
accused the other of usurping authority, and mutual hatred became 
strong. 4. The colonial assemblies became the centers of resistance 
to the king. Persons who felt otherwise could not be elected to these 
bodies ; and if any man was disposed to balance between the two 


sides the prospect of defeat by his constituency was apt to make him 
decide against the crown, and 5. Colonial politics acquired dignity 
and strength from having a great common cause of protest. Hitherto 
the contention was about some local matter, as issuing paper money, 
or the favoritism of a class, and on such a subject men might divide 
in mere factious feeling. But now there was a cause as great as any 
that had ever aroused a people. It involved equally the upper and 
the lower class ; it appealed alike to the reason and to the highest 
emotions ; and it had in it every hope of the future. 

In 1770 the colonists were divided into three groups: i. The 
tories, out and out prerogative men, who either believed that a 

government was strongest when ruled by the crown or 
Three ^^^ found it their interest to say so. In this party were 

America"^ those who derived advantage from royal favor, many 

others who were conservatives by nature and believed 
the mihtant whigs were irresponsible and led by demagogues. 2. 
The whigs, ardently protesting against the plan of king and parlia- 
ment to bring America under a stronger British control. Some of 
them were undoubtedly now willing to carry resistance to extremities, 
but felt it was not wise to say so. Among the leaders were chiefly 
those who had hitherto dominated the assemblies. Both inclination 
and interest prompted them to their course ; for by establishing the 
principle of colonial control of taxation they enhanced the power of 
the assembly, which but increased their own influence. Some whig 
leaders were accused of demagogy. They organized bands of working 
men, whom they harangued most passionately against British des- 
potism. Others, and the majority, were more quiet. There was 
always some difficulty in keeping the extremists from going too 
fast. 3. A middle class, who considered the defenders of royalty 
either selfish or misled, but who looked on the whigs as agitators. 
For the most part, they thought more of their personal affairs than 
politics. This class was very numerous, especially in the agricultural 
sections. The desire to bring them to the support of the revolution 
was a wholesome check on the more impetuous whigs. 

At this time Massachusetts was most prominent in opposition to 
the British policy, and for this Samuel Adams was chiefly responsible. 

He was able and persistent, and he lost no opportunity 
Adams' to appeal to the people. In 1772 he carried a vote in 

a Boston town meeting to create a committee of corre- 
spondence to exchange views and information with other towns in 
the colony. The other towns accepted the suggestion, and thus 
Adams became the head of a colonial organization in the whig cause. 
In the following year a group of Virginia whigs, among them Patrick 
Henry and Thomas Jefferson, carried a resolution in the assembly 
to appoint a committee for Virginia to correspond with committees 
of the other colonies in reference to all matters relating to the common 


good. Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, 
and South Carolina adopted this suggestion, and thus was created 
a central organization in behalf of the continental cause. When 
these steps were taken three years had elapsed since North had sub- 
stituted the tea tax for the Townshend duties, and although there 
had been various irritating occurrences ^ in the several colonies, there 
was nothing to which the colonies could point as an act of aggression 
on the part of parliament. Why then should this step toward a 
united America have been thought necessary? The answer must 
be that the whigs were gaining in power, and themselves becoming 
more aggressive. They had ample reason to know that the king and 
his officers had not relaxed their purpose to exercise the mastery, 
and they were preparing to meet a danger they felt inevitable. 

A small incident brought the blow they were expecting. In 1773 
the East India Company, which imported England's tea, was in 
financial straits, due, it seems, to its inability to sell tea 
in the American colonies. It appealed to the government J^^-^^* 
for a remission of duties. Lord North and the king p^^y^ 
willingly gave the relief asked for, and the company was now 
allowed to send its tea to America without any duty paid in England. 
North was asked to give up, also, the duty of threepence a pound 
imposed by the act of 1767; but he refused, saying the king was 
determined to make its collection a test of authority with America. 
On this small point, it seems safe to say, hung the question of American 

The company took the favor granted it, and in 1773 sent to the 
colonies a number of ships laden with the tea which for months had 
been accumulating in its warehouses. All this was 
known in the colonies, and the people were determined ^^^^"^^ ° 
to resist. The whig leaders at once put into operation 
their machinery of arousing opinion. The governors and higher 
officials who led the tories had no means of checking the whigs, and 
the middle group were indifferent. At Charleston the agents of 
the company resigned before the popular storm, and as the duty 
had not been paid at the end of twenty days the tea was seized by the 
collector and stored in damp vaults. Three years later it was sold 
at auction. In Philadelphia the whig leaders called large popular 

' The most important was the destruction of the Gaspee, a small ship with eight guns 
which was very active in arresting smugglers in Rhode Island. The commander was ap- 
plauded by his superiors for his zeal, and became overconfident. He went so far as to send 
some of the seized property to Boston for adjudication, alleging, with probable truth, that 
justice would not be obtained in Rhode Island. He became very unpopular in this colony, 
and when, on June g, 1772, his ship ran aground near Providence, a group of citizens 
attacked it, wounded the commander, overpowered the crew, and burned the hated craft. 
The party were well known by common report, but when a commission appeared to in- 
quire into the outrage no evidence could be had. The incident promoted colonial defiance 
and strengthened the conviction of the British government that the supreme problem in 
the colonies was to teach the colonists to respect authority. 


meetings which denounced the tea tax. Here, as in New York, the 
agents declined to act, and the cargoes went back in the ships which 
brought them. In Boston excitement was high. The agents, two 
of whom were sons of Governor Hutchinson, refused to resign, and 
took refuge in the castle. When the captains of the tea ships wished 
to go back to England with their cargoes, the governor forbade their 

departure. He seemed determined to force the issue 
" Boston ^^ ^Q 2i settlement, and Adams met it squarely. On the 
Dec i^^' night of December i6, 1773, about fifty men disguised 
17173. ' as Indians and directed by Adams himself went aboard 

the ships at the wharf and emptied 342 chests of tea into 
the water. No effort was made by the town officials to prevent this 
affair, nor were any of the participants prosecuted for destroying 
property. This act of violence is to be defended only on the ground 
that Adams and his associates considered war inevitable and looked 
upon themselves as its heralds. 

Continental Organization and Attempts at Adjustment 

While the news of the "Boston Tea Party" was fresh in England, 
parliament came together, March 7, 1774. The king was determined 
that Boston should be made to respect his power and lost 
The Colo- no tij^-^g jn calling to the attention of the lawmakers the 
ObevthT state of affairs in America. With the majority the only 
Laws. question was to make authority respected, and though 

Chatham in one house and Burke in the other pleaded for a 
restoration of the laws to the state they were in before Grenville, a 
policy of coercion was adopted. It was stated in five acts, the sub- 
stance of which was as follows : 

1. The port of Boston was closed, the customhouse was moved to 
Salem, and ships were stationed in the harbor to enforce the law. 

The ban was to be removed by the king when compensa- 
tes on or j.j^j^ ^^g made for the tea destroyed and when he was 
satisfied that the duties would be paid in the future. 

2. The charter of Massachusetts was remodeled so as to remove 
several of its liberal features. Councillors, who had hitherto been 

chosen by the assembly, were now to be appointed by the 

The Massa- Q^own. All the minor executive and judicial officers were 


Charter. ^^so to be appointed, and not elected, as formerly ; and 

the town meeting was not to meet, except for elections, 

without the consent of the governor, who must specifically authorize 

the kind of business that could be transacted. Lawyers were then 

divided on the question of the authority of parliament to annul 

or amend a colonial charter; but so good an authority as Chief 

Justice Mansfield supported the right. He proceeded on the theory 

that the English parliament may do anything but a physical impossi- 


bility. But granted this be true, what shall we say of the political 
wisdom of the men who thus jauntily tried to uproot a form of govern- 
ment which had developed through a century and a half ? Could 
they have expected any other answer than resistance ? From being a 
home of democracy Massachusetts was now to be a centralized prov- 
ince, with no other feature of popular government than the right to 
choose the members of the lower house. 

3. To secure a fair trial for officials charged with capital crimes 
while executing their duties, the governor might, if he saw fit, send 
them to England for a hearing. In such a case he must 

send witnesses. The law seems to have been suggested England 
by the trial of Preston and the soldiers concerned in the 
Boston "Massacre." 

4. The law of 1765 to authorize quartering troops had been al- 
lowed to expire ; but it was now revived. It was omi- 

nous, also, that General Gage, commander of troops in jjjg ^^t ^^' 
America, was made governor of Massachusetts. 

5. The domain ceded by France in 1763 was organized into 
a province of Quebec, governed by a legislative council appointed 
by the crown, with the Catholic Church established by law, and with 
limits including the region between the Ohio and the lakes. The 

The act was the result of a long investigation by English " Quebec 
officials and lawyers, and plausible reasons not connected ^'^*-" 
with the seaboard situation are assigned for its important features. 
But it came at an inopportune moment. Virginia, New York, Con- 
necticut, and Massachusetts claimed territory in the Northwest and 
resented the loss of it. To all the whigs it seemed that England wished 
to build up beyond the mountains a great power dependent on the St. 
Lawrence and lake systems of transportation, with a government 
highly centralized and held firmly in hand by the crown, and with an 
established religion which would preclude any sympathy with the 
Atlantic colonies. Recent investigations have shown that these as- 
sumptions were unwarranted. The Northwest was attached to 
Canada, it is said, for the better regulation of the fur trade, and the 
government and religion established in the province were necessarily 
adopted for a population mostly French Catholic and accustomed to 
the French regime. The seaboard colonies knew nothing of this. Had 
they known, the "Quebec act" must have aroused their apprehension. 
From early days they had dreamed of the time when they should sub- 
due the wilderness as far as the Mississippi. It now seemed evident 
that the dream was shattered, for whatever the motive of the govern- 
ment the Northwest was to be closed to the Atlantic colonies by being 
handed over to a people peculiarly dependent on the crown and largely 
alien in political and religious sentiment. 

The acts of 1774 brought consternation to the colonists, for they 
left no choice between resistance and submission. June i, Boston was 



blockaded, no goods might go out or come in, business stood still, 

and want invaded the homes of the poor. May 13 General 

r)°^-ou^^ Gage arrived with four regiments, and assumed the duties 
Pumshea. - ° ... _° ' 1 i 1 

01 military governor, it was expected that the town 

would soon be forced into submission and the other colonies be over- 
awed by the fate of Massachusetts. 

But there was little thought of submission. From the neighboring 
towns and from the remotest colonies came relief for Boston's poor. 

A shower of pamphlets appeared in every quarter arguing 
Elsewhere ^^^^ ^^^ cause of Massachusetts was the cause of all the 

colonies. So threatening became the situation that Gage 
fortified the neck of land then joining the town to the mainland, and 
gave up all thoughts of offensive operations against the interior. The 
officials appointed under the remodeled charter dared not show them- 
selves outside of his lines. 

By this time much was being said about a congress representing the 
whole continent after the manner of the stamp act congress of 1765. 
A Conti- The suggestion was generally approved, and Virginia took 
nentai the initiative. In May her burgesses set aside June i , the 

Movement, (jg^y ^.he Boston Port Bill began to operate, as a day for 
fasting and prayer, and for this Governor Dunmore dissolved the 
house. Then the members, in a meeting at the famous Raleigh tavern 
in Williamsburg, sent out a summons for an annual congress to con- 
sider "the united interest of America," and called a Virginia conven- 
tion to elect delegates to such a congress. The response was imme- 
diate and hearty. In three colonies only, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, 
and Pennsylvania, delegates could be chosen by the assembly. Else- 
where the royal governor adjourned that body to keep it from acting, 
and the people followed Virginia's example of calling a convention on 
their own authority. How completely the whigs now controlled 
colonial politics is shown by the fact that the personnel of these con- 
ventions was usually the same as that of the several assemblies. 

When the delegates assembled in Philadelphia, September 5, 1774, 
all the colonies were represented but Georgia. They were the best 

men among the whigs, all trained by years of leader- 
The First gj^jp j^ their respective struggles against royal govern- 
Conere^ss ^^^ ^^ rival factions. The sessions were secret, but we 
1774. ' know that two groups appeared among the delegates. 

One wished to have a union of the colonies, with a president 
appointed by the king and a council of delegates which could make 
laws subject to parliamentary veto and which could also veto laws of 
parliament relating to the colonies. Had this plan been adopted and 
allowed by England the colonies would have remained English. It 

was favored by the most conservative, among them Jay, 

Duane, Golden, Galloway, and Edward Rutledge. It had 
the serious defect thai it would most certainly be rejected by the king. 


The delegates from Virginia and Massachusetts led the other group. 
War alone, it was evident, could shake the will of George III, and if 
we must fight, let it be for independence. This was a bold idea and the 
supporters of it did not venture to announce it openly. A great many 
whigs clung lovingly to the name "Briton," and it was finally de- 
cided to publish the American contention to the world and await the 
formation of public opinion. Thus it was that the congress took up 
the preparation of a series of "Declarations and Resolves." The 
differences among the delegates show in the utterance in regard to 
legislation. It distinctly claims for the colonies the "exclusive power" 
to legislate for their own affairs, subject only to the king's veto, but it 
promises acquiescence to parliamentary acts for the bona fide regula- 
tion of external commerce and made in the commercial interest of the 
empire. As to ordinary rights of person and political liberty the 
resolutions were clear and strong. The congress also prepared ad- 
dresses to the king, the British nation, and to the people of the 

The most important action of the congress was the adoption of the 
"Association," an agreement to import no English products after 
December i, 1774, and to export nothing to any British 
port, European or colonial, after September 10, 1775. Non-im- 
This action occasioned serious opposition from New Eng- ^°^s^ocia- 
land and the middle colonies ; but every section must sacri- tion." 
fice something. Virginia gave up the exportation of tobacco 
to England, Massachusetts the West India trade, and Rhode Island the 
slave trade. The local committees were urged to see that the "As- 
sociation" was not violated. They became a very important factor 
in the revolutionary movement, administering oaths to those who 
seemed of doubtful loyalty, publishing lists of persons who violated 
the Association, and in many other ways making life unpleasant for 
tories, as all opponents of revolution soon began to be called. The 
"Association" was readily ratified by all the colonies but New York, 
where there was a strong tory element, and Georgia, which was badly 
divided between factions of New England and Southern origin. But 
in both these colonies the whigs were numerous and organized local 
committees to promote the colonial cause. 

October 26 congress dissolved, ordering a new congress to meet 
May 10, 1775, unless the grievances of the colonies were previously 
redressed. Its chief significance was that it gave cohesion 
to the whigs. They had come to understand one another. ^^** *^® 
Their appeals discountenanced independence, but advised signified, 
that the people be ready for the worst. At the same time 
the country was full of warlike preparations. Arms were bought 
and military companies were formed. Provincial congresses and com- 
mittees of safety gave the revolutionary movement an efficient or- 
ganization. The royal governors reported to the home government 


all that happened, but they were powerless to arrest the preparations 
which led daily toward revolution. 

Gage, behind his Boston barrier, watched anxiously the gathering 
storm in Massachusetts. Reliable information convinced him that the 
advent of spring, 1775, would make his task a difhcult 
and^Concord ^^^" ^^ anticipate his opponents seemed good policy, 
and on the evening of April 18 he sent 800 men to seize 
some stores at Concord, 18 miles away. The whigs were on the watch, 
and sent messengers to arouse the countryside. A lantern in the tower 
of the North church flashed information of the departure to Paul 
Revere, on the other side of Charles river, who rode hastily to Lexing- 
ton. Signal guns and galloping horses soon told the regulars that their 
movements were known. On Lexington common at dawn they en- 
countered sixty minute men in military line, who refused to disperse. 
Suddenly there was a single shot, and then a volley, before which the 
militiamen fled, eight killed and ten wounded. The British lost none, 
and proceeded to Concord, where they destroyed such stores as the 
natives, warned of the movement, had not carried away. By this 
time the countryside swarmed with militia, and the British hastily 
retreated. Every rock, tree, or fence that offered cover concealed 
angry Americans from whose fire the regulars suffered severely. 
Gage, informed of the situation, sent Percy with 1500 fresh troops to 
escort the column to safety. By this means it came back to Boston, 
but with a loss of 273 killed, wounded, and missing. The militia lost 
93 in all, and following the retreating column in force began the siege 
of Boston. 

The news from Lexington and Concord flew rapidly southward. In 
five days it reached Philadelphia, six days later it reached Virginia, 
and May 4 it was at Eden ton. North Carolina. Every- 
The Meek- where it brought forth patriotic resolves and preparations 
Resolves. ^°^ '^^'"- ^^^ most outspoken reception was in Mecklen- 
burg county. North Carolina, the center of a large Scotch- 
Irish population. Here on May 31, the militia companies being met 
for their muster, a series of resolutions was passed, declaring the com- 
missions of civil and military officers null and void, and appointing a 
method of local government "until laws shall be provided for us by 
Congress." A copy of these resolutions was sent to England, where 
it is preserved, and they were also printed in a Charleston news- 
paper. The original was destroyed by fire, and being rewritten from 
memory survived in a form resembling the national declaration of in- 
dependence. Many people have taken this paper, whose date, May 
20, is supposed to be accounted for by the difference between new 
and old chronology, for the resolutions actually passed on May 31. 
This "Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence" is not supported 
by reliable contemporary evidence, and is now rejected by the best 




May lo, 1775, the second continental congress assembled in Phila- 
delphia. Events in Massachusetts filled every heart with dismay, and 
preparations were made for war. The New England 
volunteers, which had been called out to the number of 
20,000, were taken into the pay of congress, and Washing- 
ton was appointed to the command. But still the con- 
servatives hesitated to declare for independence, and to 
preserve harmony the advanced wing consented to defer that step. 
All united in a declaration of "the Causes and Necessity for taking up 
Arms, " and made a last address to the king. The march of events was 
bringing the colonies inevitably to separation from England, and the 
progressives could afford to wait. 

In this sense nothing could have been more propitious than the 
progress of the siege of Boston, where Gage, with more than 6000 men, 
was held in close lines. His position was insecure by reason 
of high ground behind Charlestown on the north and be- 
hind Dorchester on the south. If either place were fortified, his own 
position would be untenable. On the night of June 16 the Ameri- 
cans attempted to secure 
the former position, and 
for that purpose Colonel 
Prescott occupied Breed's 
Hill, constructing re- 
doubts, at which the 
British opened fire from 
fleet and batteries early 
on the 17th. Prescott 
held his position, and 
throughout the morning 
groups of colonials came 
to his support. Gage saw 
this, and sent General 
Sir William Howe with a 
strong attacking column 
to carry the redoubts 

in front. Breed's Hill, like the adjacent Bunker Hill, which gave 
name to the battle, is on a peninsula whose upper part, a narrow plain, 
was commanded by the fleet. Had Howe taken this point and fortified 
it, the Americans must have hastened from their position or been 
starved into surrender. But neither Howe nor Gage had respect for 
the fighting qualities of their foes, and for their rashness paid dearly. 
It was in the afternoon when the regulars landed and slowly formed 
their lines along the shore. Prescott, following the best tradition of 
the American frontiersmen, ordered his men not to fire "until you see 
the whites of their eyes." At close range they delivered such deadly 
volleys that the attacking column recoiled, and fell back with great 




loss. Rallied again, they again were driven back. A third time they 
approached the crest, now supported by a body of marines, and mov- 
ing carefully. At first the Americans fired effectively, and then, to 
the surprise of Howe, their fire ceased and they retired from the field. 
Their ammunition was exhausted, and they had no bayonets to with- 
stand a charge. The British took possession of the crest, having lost 
over looo killed and wounded. The American loss was 441, and 
General Nathanael Greene remarked, "I wish we could sell them 
another hill at the same price." This engagement was considered a 
brilliant victory by the Americans, and after it the revolutionary war 
was inevitable. 

Washington, commander-in-chief, arrived in Cambridge July 2. 
The army was in confusion, supplies were lacking, enthusiasm was 

cooling, and many of the men were going home at the 
Wellington expiration of their terms of service. Had Howe, who 
mand. succeeded Gage in command, attacked vigorously, the 

Americans must have given way. Washington's presence 
worked a change. He was a man to be respected ; order reappeared, 
recruits came in, and the army recovered spirits. Supplies came from 
an unexpected source. Ethan Allen, of Vermont, acting on his own 
authority, raised a force of "Green Mountain Boys," surprised and 

captured Ticonderoga and Crown Point, after which Fort 
Aiien^ St. John fell. At these points the British had left large 

quantities of guns and ammunition, which now proved very 
helpful to the Americans. Especially useful were the cannon, which 
were carried to Boston over the snow. Other important assistance 
came from an improvised fleet, one ship of which, the Lee, commanded 
by John Manley, took an ordnance brig with 2000 muskets with bay- 
onets and a large store of ball and powder. 

Thus provided, Washington, in the spring of 1776, determined to 
force the siege to an end. March 4 he seized Dorchester Heights and 

placed cannon there. Howe sought to drive him away, 
Evacuated ^^^ '^ storm luckily kept the British for several days from 

crossing the harbor, and when it subsided the Heights 
were too strong to be taken. Boston and the fleet were now at the 
mercy of the American guns, and Howe agreed to go away and leave 
the city without further damage if he was not molested. March 17 
the departure began, the British carrying with them to Halifax about 
1000 residents of the town who were loyal to the king, and some of 
whom had been so prominent on that side that they did not trust 
themselves in a community ruled by the whigs. 

While Howe spent the winter inactive in Boston the 
Loyabsts British projected an e.xpedition against the Carolinas, 
Carolinas. where the loyalists were numerous. It was expected that 

a fleet would easily take Charleston and overawe the rich 
planters of the South Carolina coast, who were the leaders of the 


American cause in the colony. It would then go to the mouth of 
the Cape Fear, where it would be joined by a loyal army from North 
Carolina and the British authority would thus be reestablished in the 
two colonies. Along the Cape Fear were many Highlanders, who 
had no sympathy with the whig doctrines, and it was certain that 
most of them would come out to defend the crown. In this province, 
also, were the Regulators, members of an organization which existed 
from 1767 to 1 77 1 to deal with extortionate lawyers and exorbitant 
country officials in what were then called the "back counties." 
They at last rose in impotent wrath, whipped such lawyers as they 
could lay hands on, and broke up the Hillsborough court. Governor 
Tryon suppressed them at the battle of Alamance, 1771 ; 
at which most of the men now prominent in the revolution j^^^^.^ ®^"" 
in North Carolina fought under the governor. The Reg- 
ulators had good memories, they would have little to do with the 
whig movement, and when the news went abroad that a force was 
gathering at Fayetteville by command of the king to deal summary 
punishment to Caswell, Harnett, Ashe, and others of the old legis- 
lative oligarchy, they came to its assistance to the number of several 

Thus it was that 1600 Highlanders and former Regulators under 
Donald MacDonald started from Fayetteville February 18, 1776, to 
join the expected fleet at Wilmington. Caswell was on 
the alert, and they were intercepted by a whig force of ^^^ ?^ 
1000 men at Moore's Creek Bridge on February 27. In creek. 
a sharp battle the loyalists were defeated, their baggage 
taken, and all who were not killed or captured were driven in confusion 
to their homes. 

Meanwhile the cooperating fleet was delayed, and it was the middle 
of April when it reached the mouth of the Cape Fear. Here it loitered 
six weeks until convinced that no successful demonstra- 
tion would be made in the interior, and then it proceeded ^"}^^^ 
against Charleston. Six thousand militia held the town, Charleston, 
and a fort of green palmetto logs on Sullivan's Island 
commanded the channel, Colonel Moultrie in charge. The British 
might have surrounded this work and forced it to surrender, but with 
characteristic contempt for the colonials, they tried to batter it down, 
June 28, 1776. Their solid shot only buried themselves in the soft 
logs of the fort, whose well directed fire swept the decks of the fleet, and 
the attacking party were glad to withdraw with the loss of only one 
vessel. The Carolinas were saved, the South remained unshaken, and 
the Americans were encouraged generally. 

At Boston and in the South the patriots acted on the defensive and 
succeeded. The result was otherwise in Canada, where they assumed 
the offensive. It was thought that the French Canadians would gladly 
throw off the British yoke, and in the autumn of 1775 two columns 


marched against Quebec. One, led by Montgomery, 1500 strong, 
took Montreal by way of Lake Champlain, while another, under Arnold, 

starting with 1 100 men, marched through Maine and came, 
Expedition after terrible sufferings, with only 500 survivors before 
cfuebec. Quebec. Here the two columns united, but a joint attack 

failed to take the place. Montgomery was killed, and 
Arnold remained through the winter before Quebec. The natives 
gave him no assistance. Reenforced, he was gradually forced back by 
Sir Guy Carleton, commanding in Canada, but by disputing every mile 
of the way he delayed his antagonist and prevented Carlton's coopera- 
tion in the movements which Howe, as we shall see, was about to 
make against the lower Hudson. 


The ante-revolutionary controversy has usually had a biased treatment, whether 
described by Americans or Englishmen. But one may rely on the fairness of 
Howard, Preliminaries of the Revolution (1905) ; Channing, History of the United 
States, vol. Ill (191 2) ; and Woodburn, Causes of the American Revolution (Johns 
Hopkins Studies, XI, 1893). Of the older histories Bancroft, History of the United 
States, 10 vols. (1834-1874), is full, but pro-American; and Hildreth, History of 
the United States, 6 vols. (1851-1856, 1882), which is accurate and just, is patriotic 
and lacks perspective. An admirable piece of work, but from the American 
point of view, is Frothingham, Rise of the Republic (new ed. 1890). Lecky, 
History of England in the Eighteenth Century, vol. Ill (i 878-1 890), treats the 
causes of the revolution in a spirit of fairness. Professor Woodburn has pub- 
lished all Lecky 's treatment of the revolution under the title, The American 
Revolution, iy6j-i^8j (1898). G. O. Trevelyan, The American Revolution, 4 vols. 
(1899-1912), is well written and is in sympathy with America; Doyle's chapter in 
the Cambridge Modern History, vol. VII (1903) is a good summary. Of the older 
histories of England, Mahon's (1853-1854) and Adolphus's (1840-1845) are of 
tory sympathy, and Massey's (1855-1863) is whig in feehng. 

For general sources, on the American side see: Force, American Archives, 
4th series, 6 vols., and 5th series, 3 vols. (1837-1853) ; Niles, Principles and Acts 
of the Revolution (ed. 1876) ; Moore, Diary of the American Revolution (1863), 
chiefly reprinted from newspapers ; Gibbes, Documentary History of the Revolution 
(1889) ; and Durand, New Material for the American Revolution (1889), from 
French sources. The British official sources are : Cobbett-Hansard, Parlia- 
mentary History, vols. XV-XVIII ; Cavendish, Debates of the House of Commons, 
1768-1771, 3 vols. (1841-1843); Journal of the House of Commons, vols. XXIX- 
XXXVI; Journal of the House of Lords, 3 vols., ed. Rogers (1875); Calendar of 
Home Office Papers, 1760-1775, 3 vols. (1878-1899) ; and Statutes at Large, 109 
vols, (i 762-1866). These British sources are quite unwieldy, but for the careful 
student of the period they are essential. MacDonald, Select Charters (1899), 
contains the most important documents. 

Of the Works and lives of the leading Americans of the time the following are 
important: Samuel Adams, Writings, Gushing, ed., 4 vols. (1904-1908); Dick- 
inson, Writings, ed. by P. L. Ford, vol. i (1895) ; Franklin, Complete Works, 
ed. by Bigelow, 10 vols. (1887-1888) ; Stephen Hopkins, Works, 3 vols. (1854); 
Theodoric Bland, Papers, 2 vols. (1840-1843); Henry, Life of Patrick Henry, 
3 vols. (1891), contains valuable correspondence; Josiah Quincy, Memoirs of 
Josiah Quincy, Junior (1824 and 1875) ; and Rowland, Life of George Mason, 
2 vols. (1892). On the British side see: Edmund Burke, Works, 12 vols. (ed. 
1871); Chatham, Corre5/>OM(/eMce, ed. Taylor, 4 vols. (1838); Francis Thackeray, 

7 6»°~ 



Chatham, 2 vols. (1827); Almon, Anecdotes of William Pitt, 3 vols. (ed. 1810) ; 
Grenville Papers, ed. Smith, 4 vols. (1853) ; Keppel, Memoirs of the Marquis of 
Rockingham, 2 vols. (1852); Donne, Carres ponJdcncc of George III with Lord 
North, 2 vols. (1867) ; Horace Walpole, Memoirs of the Court of George III , 4 vols, 
(ed. 1894); and Ibid., Letters, ed. by Cunningliam, 9 vols. (1857). Of great value 
are the letters from British officials in America, especially : Hutchinson, Diary and 
Letters, 2 vols. (1883-1886); Bernard, Select Letters (1774); Bradford, Speeches 
of the Governors and Ans%vers of the Representatives [of Massachusetts], 176 ^-ijj^ 
(1818) ; Kimball, Correspondence of the Governors of Rhode Island, 1723-1775, 

2 vols. (1902-1903) ; Browne, Correspondence of Governor Sharpc [of Maryland], 

3 vols. (1888-1895) ; and theColden Papers, 2 vols., in N. Y. Hist. Soc. Collections, 
(1876-187 7). Valuable documents on this period are to be found in all the pub- 
lished records of the individual colonies. See also .A.lmon, Collection of Papers 
Relating to the Dispute (1777). 

Of local histories and other works see : Hutchinson, History of the Province of 
Massachusetts Bay, 3 vols, (i 795-1828), by a royal governor, but commendably 
impartial and accurate; Minot, History of Massachusetts, 1748-176$, 2 vols. 
(1798-1803), on the American side; Moultrie, Memoirs of the Revolution, 2 vols. 
(1802); Drayton, Memoirs of the American Revolution, 2 vols. (1821) ; Ramsay, 
History of the Revolution in South Carolina, 2 vols. (1785) ; and Jones, Ncvd York 
in the Revolutionary War, 2 vols. (ed. of 1879). The material in the Annual 
Register on the period Just before our revolution is believed to have been chiefly 
from Edmund Burke. On two important episodes see: Ba.asett, The Regulators of 
North Carolina (Am. Hist. Assn. Report, 1894), and Hoyt, Tfie Mecklenburg Declar- 
ation of Independence (1907). The state histories generally contain valuable 
information on the causes of the revolution. 

On special topics see : Tyler, Literary History of the American Revolution, 2 vols. 
(1897); Beer, The Commercial Policy of England toward the Colonies (Columbia 
Univ. Studies, vol. HI, 1893); Ibid., The Old Colonial System [1660-1754], 2 vols. 
(1912) ; Ibid., British Colonial Policy, 1754-1765 (1907) ; Lord, Industrial Experi- 
ments in the British Colonies (Johns Hopkins Univ. Studies, extra, 1898) ; Cross, 
The American Episcopate a>id the American Colonies (Harvard Historical Studies, 
1902); Van Tyne, Loyalists in the American Revolution {Ihid., 1902); Hunt, The 
Provincial Committees of Safety of the A merican Revolution (1904) ; and Cotifin, Province 
of Quebec and the Early American Revolution (Univ. of Wisconsin Bulletins, I, 1896). 

For Independent Reading 

Tyler, Patrick Henry (1893) ; Anne Maury, Memoirs of a Huguenot Family 
(1872); Burnaby, Travels through the Middle Settlements [1759-1760] (1775); 
G. O. Trevelyan, The American Revolution, 4 vols. (1899-1912); Hosmer, 
Samuel Adams (1893) ; Morse, Benjamin Franklin (1892) ; Frank Moore, Songs 
and Ballads of the American Revolution (1856) ; and Sargent, Loyalist Poetry of the 
Resolution (1857). 



The Declaration of Independence 

By the close of 1775 only the exporters and merchants in England 
thought of yielding to America. The landholders, who controlled 

parliament, and Englishmen generally, believed that re- 
converting bellion existed and should be suppressed. The king was 
servatives. ^*^^ coercion. He would not receive the petition of the 

second continental congress, and when he heard of Bun- 
ker Hill, proclaimed the Americans rebels and forbade commercial 
intercourse with them. Parliament closed the American ports and 
authorized the impressment of American sailors for service in the royal 
navy. As further notice of the unyielding intention of the British, 
Falmouth, Maine (Portland), was burned in October and Norfolk, Vir- 
ginia, on January 1,1776. At this time the second continental congress 
was sitting in a second session, holding back such impetuous members 
as Samuel Adams and Patrick Henry, and waiting for sentiment to 
form. It was now so evident that the colonies must submit or fight 
that most of the conservatives gave up their opposition to independ- 
ence. Jefferson expressed the general opinion when he wrote : 
"I will cease to exist before I yield to a connection on such terms as 
the British Parliament proposes." 

In January, 1776, appeared at Philadelphia a pamphlet called 
"Common Sense," by "an Englishman." It stated the case of the 

colonies in the plain language of the people, and was widely 
Sen*s™™°'^ read. What all had been thinking was here plainly stated. 

"The period of debate," said the author, "is closed. 
Arms, as the last recourse, must decide the contest. The appeal was 
the choice of the king and the continent hath accepted the challenge." 
At first this bold utterance was attributed to Franklin, but it soon 
became known that it was written by Thomas Paine, an Englishman 
then resident about a year in America. In later years he became un- 
popular on account of his writings against the Christian religion ; but 
history cannot forget that he was an important promoter of the rev- 

By the spring of 1776 the conservatives were driven to the last 
ditch. They desired some form of colonial home rule which should 
preserve British sovereignty and leave the colonies a large measure 



of self-direction. They were strong in the middle colonies, especially 
in Pennsylvania and New York, where the older settlements felt 
much apprehension at the prospect of a democratic up- 
heaval which should disturb the political center of gravity. Waning in- 
New England, Virginia, and North Carolina were clearly tj^^^on- 
with the radicals, and South Carolina and Georgia servatives. 
were undecided. Colonial home rule was far from 
the thought of king and parliament, and as this fact became more ap- 
parent in America the more the conservatives found themselves at sea. 

While Congress thus hesitated in the hope of uniting the two fac- 
tions within its membership. North Carolina, the one democratic 
Southern colony, authorized her delegates at Philadelphia 
to support independence. It was the step uppermost in ^tate Action 
the minds of the radicals, and other colonies followed indenend-" 
rapidly. May 15 congress advised the colonies to con- ence. 
tinue no longer in the parlous state in which they then 
were, but to erect themselves into states, with governments resting on 
the consent of the people. The advice had already been anticipated 
by Virginia, where a convention met on May 5, and on the 15th de- 
clared Virginia independent of Great Britain. This action by the 
oldest and largest of the thirteen colonies had a most powerful effect 
on the hestitating ones. South Carolina and Georgia could not hold 
out longer, and Maryland and New Jersey showed signs of weakening. 

June 7, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia gave further evidence of the 
leadership his state had assumed when he introduced in congress three 
important resolutions. They declared : (i) that the 
thirteen colonies were and ought to be free and independ- J^^ P®*^" 
ent, (2) that foreign alliances should be made, and ^^^J^^^^_ 
(3) that steps should be taken to adopt a general plan of ence. 
confederation. The conservatives, led by Dickinson of 
Pennsylvania, who still clung to colonial home rule, suggested that the 
first resolution might well await action on the third, and the idea was 
adopted ; but a committee consisting of Jefferson, Franklin, John 
Adams, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston was appointed to 
draught a declaration. Preparing a form of general government 
proved a slow affair, and July i the question of independence was 
again taken up. Little discussion was necessary, and July 2 congress 
voted in its favor and called on the committee for a written declaration, ' 
the New York delegates refusing to vote. Then was brought in the 
famous paper, chiefly the work of Jefferson, which with slight changes 
was formally adopted on July 4. August 2 an engrossed copy was 
signed by the members present, some of whom were not in attendance 
on July 4, and later on some signed who were absent on August 2. 
By this time the New York delegates had been instructed to sign, and 
thus the declaration had the support of all the thirteen colonies. The 
report of the committee to prepare a plan of confederation was made 


July 12, but it met such opposition that it was not until November 
17 J 1777) that an agreement could be reached (see page 238). 

The Declaration of Independence is one of the great documents of 
history. All that Locke and his followers in England and France had 
It c t t S'Sserted about the nature of government was here re- 
asserted and made a practical matter. Here we read that 
"all men are created equal," that they have the right to "life, liberty, 
and the pursuit of happiness," to secure which governments are es- 
tablished, that the right to rule is derived "from the consent of the 
governed," and that when a given government ceases to guarantee 
these privileges, "it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, 
and to institute a new government, laying its foundation on such prin- 
ciples, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem 
most likely to effect their safety and happiness." Here was stated the 
theoretical basis of the American government. In justification of the 
revolution the Declaration further set forth a long series of acts of 
tyranny committed by the king and parliament against which the 
colonies had protested in vain. It closed with the noble assertion 
that "these united colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and 
independent states," and for the support of this assertion they mu- 
tually pledged to each other "our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred 

The Campaign around New York, 1776 

The central position on the Atlantic coast is New York. Howe, in 
Boston, well knew it, and would have gone thither directly had he not 

been forced to leave that city with a beaten army. His 
St°7^ T ^^^y ^^ Halifax was short. Gathering supplies and re- 
land, cruits he soon sailed southward, and June 25 was off Sandy 

Hook, welcomed warmly by Governor Tryon and the 
loyalists, whom the whigs had forced to leave the city. By the be- 
ginning of August he had 32,000 men on Staten Island, and an ex- 
cellent fleet under his brother. Earl Howe, lay in the lower harbor. 

Washington also appreciated the importance of New York, and 
repaired thither with his army as soon as the evacuation of Boston 

gave him opportunity. He strengthened the defenses of 
The De- ^^iq city, then on the lower end of the island. The ap- 

16IIS6S of 

New York, proach by water was defended by works on Governor's 
Island, and at Paulus Hook (Jersey City), and Red Hook, 
on Long Island, and by obstructions in the channel. As a second 
line of defense, if such should be necessary, Forts Lee and Washington 
were constructed on opposite sides of the Hudson at a point near 
what is now 183rd street. So far the work was good; but reflection 
showed that the easiest approach was by way of Brooklyn, and that 
the key to that position was a wooded ridge, Brooklyn Heights, or 
the Heights of Guana, two miles behind the village and extending 


from the Narrows to the northeast. It was passable by artillery at 
the shore, at Flatbush Pass, and at Jamaica Pass, the last six miles 
or more from the shore. To hold Brooklyn and this approach to it he 
detailed General Nathanael Greene with 7000 men. The rest, about 
21,000, were distributed among the various fortified positions or held 
in readiness in the city. 



10 c E A y 

Howe's first operations against New York, unlike his later move- 
ments, were energetic, and showed a disposition to utilize his 
advantage of superior strength. August 22, he threw a 
large part of his army across the Narrows and lay before 
Greene's force at the western end of Brooklyn Heights. 
This American commander was ill from fever, and Washing- 
ton sent General Israel Putnam to take command. Put- 
nam's courage and patriotism had been proved on many 
occasions, but he was not a commander either by training or natural 
endowment, and in this case he left the several parts of the army to 
take care of themselves. Howe's attack was made on the morning of 
August 27. Dividing his army into three columns, he sent the first 
to threaten the Americans along the shore, another was to move 

The Battle 
of Brooklyn 
August 27, 


through FlatbushjOn their center, while a third, which he led in person, 
was to make a wide detour around their left. The turning move- 
ment was made in the night of August 26, and took Putnam completely 
by surprise. Knowing by the cannonading that it was time to ad- 
vance, the first and second columns then attacked vigorously, and the 
Americans, taken in front and rear, were forced back into the defenses 
of the village of Brooklyn with a loss of 1500 men, iioo of whom were 

Washington threw reenforcements across the East river to save the 
remnant of the army. He was reluctant to abandon the position; 

for the cliff-like "Heights" of Brooklyn, now the abode 
The Escape ^f ^-^e city's most prominent families, and not to be con- 
Brooklyn, founded with the scene of the battle of the 27th, dominated 

lower New York. A day's experience showed him that 
he had committed an error. If the British fleet forced its way into 
the river, he would be caught in a trap from which he could not hope 
to escape. That such a thing did not happen probably was due to 
a strong northeast wind which held for three days, and made it im- 
possible for the ships to beat up the river. In the evening of the 29th 
Washington began to transfer his army in such boats as he could find. 
Late in the night the wind fell, and in the following morning a dense 
fog settled over the scene. Under its protection the army and ah the 
supplies except a few heavy guns were removed to safety, to the 
extreme disgust of Howe, who had thought the victims all but 

New York was now abandoned, the Americans retreating toward 
the north end of the island. A British force followed, but was beaten 

off in a rear-guard action, the Battle of Harlem, over 
of Harlem ground on which Columbia University now stands. It 

was now, September 22, that Captain Nathan Hale, 
formerly a Connecticut schoolmaster, was shot for a spy. He had 
volunteered to go into New York to obtain information, and when 

arrested avowed his mission. His dying words, "I only 
Hale*'^ regret I have but one life to lose for my country," were 

soon repeated at every patriot's fireside in the land. For 
a short time there was an interval of inaction, after which Howe moved 
eastward to get around Washington's strongly intrenched position 

north of Harlem. At Pell's Point Colonel Glover, of 
White Massachusetts, with 750 men held back the British column 

October 22. ^f 4000, inflicting a loss of 800, and by his spirited resistance 

changing Howe's determination to make a turning move- 
ment. The result was the battle of White Plains, October 22, an 
attack on Washington's front, delivered deliberately. The Americans 
were driven back after inflicting a serious loss. Howe had penetrated 
their lines, but a rain storm intervened, and Washington withdrew to a 
strong position at Newcastle. 


Howe now gave up the idea of crushing his antagonist, who was 
clearly too wary for such a fate, and attempted to take Forts Washing- 
ton and Lee. His ships had passed freely between them, 
and Washington told Greene, who was in direct command, ^'"^^ . 
to abandon them if it seemed advisable. He himself an^\e°^°° 
took steps to construct in the Highlands other defenses of captured, 
the important river, which seemed to invite invasion from 
Canada. As the British threatened New Jersey, he moved a portion of 
his army across the river, thus dividing his force. Then Howe closed 
in on Fort Washington and forced it to surrender with 2600 men, the 
best in the American army. Rapidly moving across the Hudson he 
took Fort Lee with a large quantity of supplies, barely giving the garri- 
son opportunity to escape to the western wing near Hackensack. 
The eastern wing, 7000 strong at Newcastle, was com- 
manded by Lee, whom Washington vainly ordered to his The Contest 
aid in New Jersey. Lee was willful and selfish. Second transferred 
in command, he enjoyed the prospect of promotion to *° ^®^ 
first place if calamity befell his superior ; and by his dis- •'®''^®y- 
obedience he was willing to contribute to that end. 

Flushed by success, Howe now believed the war all but ended. His 
opponents were divided and discouraged, and many of their regiments 
anxiously awaited the end of the year when their terms 
of enlistment would expire. All this he well knew from the P^® Retreat 
tories, who were numerous. It seemed easy to complete New Jersey, 
the destruction of a foe thus situated, and that honor he 
awarded to Lord Cornwallis, who with 5000 men moved quickly against 
the 6000 Washington now had at Newark. Under these circumstances, 
battle was impossible, and the campaign resolved itself into an Ameri- 
can retreat. At Brunswick most of the Maryland and New Jersey 
militia marched home, spite of the pleas of their commander, because 
their terms of service had expired. Washington, left with only 3000 
men, fell back rapidly, and December 8 placed his army with the 
baggage on the south side of the Delaware at Trenton. As he trans- 
ferred his last battalions, the British vanguard arrived, but he had se- 
cured all the boats for seventy miles along the river and was safe for 
the time. To congress he appealed for help, urging that militia were 
inadequate, and asking that a continental army be enlisted for the war. 

Meanwhile, to many people, the cause of independence seemed 
doomed. Howe issued a proclamation, offering pardon to those who 
submitted, and 2700 people accepted it, among them the 
president of the New Jersey committee of safety. In ^1^^^^ 
Philadelphia, thirty miles from Trenton, there was great Americans, 
terror. Merchants closed their stores, congress adjourned 
to Baltimore, martial law was established, and the roads were thronged 
with fugitives. In its dismay, congress gave Washington full power 
to carry on the war as he saw fit. 


The manner in which he justified their confidence is one of the 
gratifying stories of the war. At Trenton was Colonel Rail with 1400 

men, mostly Hessians, who by committing numerous 
The Battles outrages on the inhabitants had made themselves thor- 
and Prince- ^^g^^Y hated. On Christmas night Washington under- 
ton. took to seize this force. Dividing his army into three 

columns he ordered them across the Delaware to surround 
the enemy's position. Two were turned back by obstacles, but the 
third, with which he himself marched, reached the north bank of the 
river, advanced eight miles through a storm of sleet, seized the only 
road which offered a means of escape, and forced the Hessians to a 
battle in which Rail was killed and 1000 of his men were captured and 
carried safely into Pennsylvania. Immediately recrossing the Dela- 
ware, he again faced the enemy, who concentrated a strong force at 
Trenton and believed they were about to crush their opponents. But 
Washington, leaving his camp fires burning brightly, slipped away 
during the night, passed the British flank, and in the early morning of 
January 3, 1777, defeated a strong column at Princeton. From these 
two victories came a revival of hope, which promoted the enlistment of 
troops, and as the remnant of Lee's army had now joined, the worst of 
the recent danger was passed. Washington manifested his confidence 
by taking position at Morristown, New Jersey, where he was not dis- 
turbed. Howe, on the other hand, did not dare leave his army in 
outposts throughout New Jersey, and that province once more passed 
under American authority. Washington's military prowess has 
sometimes been questioned, and one cannot deny that there were long 
intervals when he seemed to be content to let well enough alone, but 
in the battles of Trenton and Princeton, as in the campaign against 
Yorktown, when spurred by a great necessity, he showed aggressive- 
ness and resourcefulness of the highest order. Frederick the Great 
said that Washington's success from December 25, 1776, to January 
4, 1777, was "the most brilliant" in military history. 

The Campaigns of 1777, PmLADELPHiA and Saratoga 

For a time events had seemed to confirm the hope of the king that 
the war would be short and easy. But the end of the year 1776 

changed the prospect. "All our hopes," said Germain, 
inA^eri^a'^^ the colonial secretary, in 1779, "were blasted by that 

unhappy affair at Trenton." In fact, when spring came 
in 1777, two years after the affair at Lexington, the British held no 
parts of the colonies except New York and Newport, Rhode Island. 
Elsewhere the people went quietly about their business, saw the whig 
politicians call provincial congresses and adopt state constitutions, 
read the laws of the continental congress, and gave a passive obedience 
to the new regime. But the call for soldiers was slightly heeded, 



partly because the people were accustomed to look to the states for 
political authority, and had no love for the newborn congress, partly 
because of inherited jealousy of a standing army, and partly because 
there had in the past been so little popular participation in govern- 
ment that the ordinary man felt little responsibility on its account. 
Try as it might, congress could not raise an army. Making allowance 
for the tories and slaves, there were in the thirteen states in 1777 about 
200,000 men of the miHtary age, yet Washington, with power to 
offer as liberal terms as he chose, had in the early spring no more than 

4000 regulars. Besides these, his hope was the militia, which the ex- 
perience of the preceding year taught him to esteem lightly. 

It was a small force to oppose the operations then being planned by 
the British government. Three strong columns were to cooperate in 
seizing the Hudson in order to cut in two the area of re- -o .^. , 
sistance ; one under General Burgoyne was to move from pj^^g j,^„„_ 
Montreal by way of Lake Champlain ; another under St. 
Leger was to march from Oswego through the Mohawk valley, and 
a third, Howe's army, was to advance up the Hudson from New York. 
The three armies were expected to meet at or near Albany. By 
Germain's carelessness, an order to participate in this movement was 
not sent to Howe, who, thinking himself free to fight where he chose, 
decided to take Philadelphia. 


Leaving the militia of New England and New York to impede Bur- 
goyne, Washington kept a sharp eye on the force in New York. To his 
astonishment that force first moved to Staten Island, then 
Brandvwine embarked on a great flotilla of 250 vessels. This action 
Washington considered a ruse, but as the ships stood 
southward the American army entered Pennsylvania. After some 
days of anxiety lest Howe, doubling his tracks, should get far up the 
Hudson before the Americans reached New Jersey, Washington at 
last learned that his opponents were at Elkton, at the head of Chesa- 
peake Bay, thirty-five miles southwest of Philadelphia. He moved 
southward immediately to protect the capital, and on September 11 
the two armies faced one another on opposite sides of Brandywine 
Creek. The Americans, including the militia, were 11,000, and the 
British 18,000. Howe used his superior numbers, as at Brooklyn 
Heights. Leaving 5000 men in front of Washington, he marched 
around the American right wing and placed his opponents between 
two fires. Washington was taken by surprise. While the flanking 
movement was being made he gave orders to fall on the British in 
detail. The attack was just beginning when an erroneous dispatch 
arrived, seeming to indicate that Howie's flanking movement was a 
feint. Then followed an hour's hesitation, by which the opportunity 
of defeating a divided foe was lost. The Americans threw themselves 
bravely on the two divisions, and by hard fighting held the field until 
night enabled them to withdraw in safety to Chester, each side losing 
about 1000 men. September 26 the British entered Philadelphia and 
began to fortify it. 

Most of the British army went into camp at Germantown, seven 
miles from Philadelphia, and Washington, hovering in the neighbor- 
hood, determined to surprise it early in the morning of 
Battle of October 4. He now had 9000 continentals to whom recent 
town. campaigning had given the fiber of regulars. The attack 

was made in a dense fog, which made the surprise a success, 
but led to confusion on both sides. But the Americans carried all 
before them and seemed to have won a \dctory, when six British com- 
panies took refuge in the stone house of Chief Justice Chew and of- 
fered such resistance that the attacking line was delayed untfl the re- 
treating regiments could make a new stand. By that time reenforce- 
ments had come up from Philadelphia, and Washington withdrew from 
the battle with a loss of iioo men, while his opponents lost 500. In 
December he went into winter quarters at Valley Forge, where he could 
keep his eye on Philadelphia. 

Burgoyne's campaign was the sequel of the American 

^°^^ expedition against Quebec in 1775. After Montgomery's 

Carleton. death, Arnold remained in command of the invaders and 

contested every foot of the ground over which they fell 

back. Sir Guy Carleton, his opponent and governor of Canada, pressed 


him vigorously, and when Howe began his campaign against New York, 
August, 1776, the two forces had reached the northern end of Lake 
Champlain. To hold this lake each side began to construct a fleet of 
small boats. Arnold's squadron was weaker than that of his foe, but 
he directed it with great skill, and though twice defeated, delayed the 
British until early November, when Carleton concluded that it would 
be unwise to continue a progress involving the capture of Ticonderoga 
in the winter. He accordingly withdrew his entire force to Canada. 
Arnold's bold resistance had been of great service ; for had Carleton 
found less opposition he would have reached the Hudson in time to 
join hands with Howe before Washington was able to escape out of 
New Jersey. 

A practical difficulty now arose in regard to the command. Carleton 
ranked Howe in the British army, but the latter had been promised 
a free hand in America. To avoid an unpleasant clash of 
authority the command of the former was, therefore, by co^^nV° 
orders from England limited to Canada, and the conduct 
of the invading operations of 1777 was given to Burgoyne, a man of 
less ability. Carleton could only submit, but it was a bitter pill to 
see 8000 of his best troops march away in June, 1777. Of this force 
675 went with St. Leger, the rest with 1 urgoyne, both columns ac- 
companied by Indians. 

The main body were before Ticonderoga on July i, and St. Clair, 
who commanded there with 3000 men, abandoned the place rather 
than allow himself to be besieged. The Americans with- 
drew in good order, fighting a sharp rear-guard action at j^^^g^^^^ 
Hubbardton. They were in good spirits, and by obstruct- 
ing the roads made the enemy's progress tedious. Boats and supplies 
must be carried overland to Lake George, and from the southern end 
of that body of water by portage to the Hudson, at Fort Edward. It 
was July 29 before the latter place was reached, and another month 
passed before thirty days' rations were transported thither. By that 
time Burgoyne's commissary was so much depleted that he was im- 
pelled to replenish it by a raid in Vermont, then a part of New Hamp- 
shire. Thus was projected Baum's expedition to Bennington. 

Burgoyne had been told that the people of Vermont were loyal, and 
he thought 500 men, all Brunswickers, enough for the task assigned 
to Baum. The event showed how much he was misin- 
formed. The Vermonters rose in great numbers when they Bemdneton 
heard that the Germans were among them. They found 
an excellent leader in John Stark, until recently a colonel under Wash- 
ington, but now without a command on account of the indifference of 
congress to his worth. Placed in command of the New Hampshire 
militia, he raised 800 men and was beyond the mountains before Baum 
knew of his movement. He came upon the Germans at Bennington, 
cleverly surrounded them, and in a vigorous battle on August 16 




Gates in 
against Bur 




killed or captured nearly all. In the moment of victory a second 

body of British came up to reenforce Baum, and they too were 

defeated, the total British loss being 800. 
Burgoyne heard the news with dismay. 

Hard after it came the information that St. 

Leger's expedition through the Mohawk val- 
ley was driven back to Canada. 

Drive^n Back ^^^^ officer had reached Oswego 
safely. Proceeding up the Seneca 

river to Lake Oneida, and thence by a short 

portage, he came to Fort Schuyler, or Stanwix, 

on the upper Mohawk. This post had, to 

his surprise, been recently strengthened, and 

was so well held by a garrison of 750 men 

that St. Leger was obliged to resort to a 

regular siege. By this time a large number 

of settlers, mostly Germans, occupied the 

valley. They were loyal Americans, and flew 

to arms under General Herkimer, who led 800 

of them to the relief of the beleaguered fort. 

At Oriskany they marched into a trap set 

for them by St. Leger. But instead of re- 
treating they leaped behind trees and stones 

and fought so well in the frontier fashion 

that the British were driven back to the 

fort, only to find that during their absence 

the garrison, sallying out of the walls, had 

entered the camp of the besiegers and car- 
ried off enough supplies to enable them to 

protract their defense many days. This 

success aroused enthusiasm in the American 

army on the Hudson, and Arnold, with 2000 

soldiers, was sent to drive off St. Leger. 

That officer was now in extreme danger, and 

withdrew hastily to Lake Ontario, August 22, 

his Indian allies deserting in a body. 

These two successes encouraged the Ameri- 
cans, and militia from New England and New 
York gathered daily at Albany 
and marched up the Hudson to 
meet the invaders. By Septem- 
ber I they were 10,000, and a 
month later 20,000. Massachu- 
setts sent a large number commanded by General Lincoln. At 

first General Schuyler was in chief command, but he was unpopular 

with the New Englanders, and dissension was imminent. To secure 


harmony, congress now sent General Gates, formerly an English 
officer who, like Charles Lee, had offered his services early in 
the war and had been made a major general. Like Lee, also, 
he had intrigued against Washington. He was loyal to the cause, but 
incompetent, and the success he now won was chiefly due to his able 
subordinates, Lincoln, Arnold, and Morgan. He placed his army 
across the British line of approach, at Bemis Heights, on the Hudson, 
about twenty-five miles south of Fort Edward. Before it Burgoyne 
appeared September 19, his force reduced to 5000 men 
by recent losses, by desertion, and by the necessity of First and 
leaving garrisons behind him. In front of this position, E^??,'^^ 
at Freeman's Farm, or Stillwater, was fought a very vig- Freeman's 
orous skirmish, in which the British lost nearly 500 men. Farm. 
Then Burgoyne, although his troops were on reduced 
rations, lay inactive for three weeks. October 7 he threw out his right 
wing to ascertain Gates's strength, and the result was another en- 
gagement at Freeman's Farm, the British loss being 600 men, several 
cannon, and much ammunition. Convinced that he could go no 
farther southward, Burgoyne turned about in an indecisive manner and 
came to Saratoga. His position was precarious, for the Americans had 
already appeared in strength on his line of communica- 
tions ; but had he acted with energy after the 7th he might Sun-ender 
have escaped to Fort George without entire defeat. His goyne. 
slow movements enabled his opponents to surround him, 
and at Saratoga, October 17, he surrendered his army, the conditions 
being that the troops should march to Boston, whence they might 
return to England with the understanding that unless they were ex- 
changed they were not to serve again in North America during the war. 
Two weeks before the capitulation Clinton had started from New 
York for Albany with a naval and military force. He took Forts 
Montgomery and Clinton, and a part of his force reached Kingston, 
but at that point it turned back because the channel was too shallow 
for the ships. Thus ended the British campaign on the Hudson. 

Gates's terms at Saratoga were lenient, and were granted because of 
Clinton's demonstration up the Hudson. Though Burgoyne's troops 
could not again serve in America, they might replace 
European garrisons which were sent across the Atlantic, ^^V n Re- 
and as France was now about to join the United States they pudiated. 
might be used against her. These reflections awakened 
keen disappointment in congress and out of it. Demands were made 
for the repudiation of the convention, but the same end was reached in 
a less outspoken manner. Burgoyne fell to wrangling over the quar- 
ters furnished his officers and declared the convention broken. This, it 
was said, indicated that the British themselves would not keep it, 
and it was decided to hold the captives until the agreement was ratified 
by England. When it was discovered that Burgoyne had failed to 

iqs the americax revolutiox 

hand over some cartouch-boxes, congress made it the groimd for openly 
repudiating the terms. Some of the prisoners were exchanged, most 
of the Germans were released to become American citizens, and the 
rest were held imtil the war ended. The British bitterly charged us 
with broken faith. 

The Alix\nce with Fr-\xce 

From the begi n ning of the revolution the Americans looked to France 
for aid, but when in June, 1776, Silas Deane arrived in Paris as an 

American agent he was not received by \'ergennes, the 
Early Aid foreign secretan.'. He found many friends in private cir- 
France. ^^» ^^^ when the news came that independence had been 

declared the attitude of the government changed, although 
open recognition was still carefully withheld. About this time the 
firm of "Hortalez et Cie'' began to sell general merchandise in the 
capital, its largest dealings being with "Timothy Jones," of Bermuda, 
to whom were sold large quantities of ammunition and firearms. 
Those behind the scenes knew that "' Jones "' was in reaHty Silas Deane, 
that the merchant company was Beaumarchais, better known as a 
dramatist, and that most of the money with which '"Jones" settled 
his accounts was derived from secret loans from the kings of France 
and Spain. Each monarch thus advanced a million li\Te5 (8200,000), 
with which Deane pm-chased 30,000 stands of arms, 250 cannon, and 
supplies of clothing. The British ambassador complained of these 
proceedings, but Vergennes put him off with fair words. In the autumn, 
Franklin and Arthur Lee were appointed to aid Deane. Soon after 
his arrival Lee quarreled with Deane and withdrew from Paris in 
anger. Franklin, however, remained, and by his simple manners and 
genuine kindness charmed all Paris. But he could not at that time 
secure from the king the recognition of American independence. 

With the French people he had better success, and the 
Volunteers American cause became ver>- popular in Paris. With the 

young French noblemen it became the fashion of the day 
to offer their services to the struggling .American repubhc. Most of 
them were mere enthusiasts, and their offers were declined ; but one, 
who was accepted, proved a notable exception. The ^larquis of 
Lafayette, ha\Tng come over at his own expense, arrived at Philadel- 
phia with Kalb and twelve other French officers, just before the battle 
of Brand^Tvine. He offered to ser\"e in any capacity ; Congress made 
him a major-general, and the results justified their action. Kalb, 

as well as Pulaski, a Pole, whom Franklin also sent to 
and Others America, proved efficient officers, and both fell in the cause 

they espoused. We must not forget Baron von Steuben, 
a Prussian officer, who also came to help the Americans, and whose 
best ser\-ice was to organize and drill the continental army. 


In 1777 Vergennes was ready to give open aid to America if Spain 
would do the same. Before he could take the proper steps, news came 
that Howe was in Philadelphia and that Burgoyne had 
taken Ticonderoga, \nth the upper Hudson valley at his ^^^^ °^ 
mercy. Vergennes'senthusiasmsuddenly cooled, and even j^^g_ 
Beaumarchais began to despair. Then came, December 7, 
the story of Burgoyne's defeat. Beaumarchais, beside himself with joy, 
is said to have dislocated his arm in his haste to inform the king. Paris 
rejoiced as though Saratoga had been a French \'ictory. Vergennes 
sent off messengers to ^Madrid urging the king of Spain to recognize 
American independence, and set to work at once on two treaties which, 
signed February 6, 1778, created political and commercial bonds be- 
tween France and the United States. Each nation promised to make 
war on the enemies of the other, while the United States guaranteed 
the sovereignty of the French West Indies, vdih certain pri\ileges in 
.American ports. England and France were at war immediately, 
but Spain held back. She had a new ministry and would not en- 
courage revolution in America ; but in 1779 she declared war on Eng- 
land, not, however, as an ally of the United States. The action of 
France was imdoubtedly due to her desire to weaken England, but it 
is due to Vergennes and Louis X\T to say that they treated the United 
States generously. If they had demanded harder terms, we must have 
accepted them. 

The battle of Saratoga had also its echo in London. Lord North, 
the prime minister, announced, December 10, a forthcoming scheme 
to end the war by conciliation. Two months later the 
plan was revealed, and in March, 1778, parliament ap- q^^^^ 
proved. The coercive acts of parliament were to be compromise, 
repealed, fvdl pardon was to be granted, and America 
was to have all she demanded except independence. Commis- 
sioners of pacification were sent to Philadelphia, but they found 
the .\mericans indifferent. Only British self-confidence could as- 
simie that in this situation the United States would desert 
the newly made French alliance and accept the old position of 

The French alliance came none too soon, for the "winter of 1777-177S 
was a gloomy period for .America . Without fimds congress could do noth- 
ing for the arm}-, which suffered terribly at Valley Forge. 
Food was plentiful in Pennsvlvania, but the farmers would ^°°™^, 
not sell it for the depreciated continental currenc}', al- Retreat, 
though they gave it readily in exchange for British specie 
at Philadelphia. In that city there was a festive season, loyalists 
were numerous, and, Saratoga forgotten for the time being, men 
began to think the continental cause desperate. From these depths 
the public mind was raised by the news that France would help 
v\-ith money, men, and ships. 


The spring saw a change in England's military plans. It was de- 
cided to take again the French West Indian islands, which had been 

handed back in 1763, and to carry out that program the 
E acuated ^ ^^^^ ^^ ^^^ American continent was suspended. At the 

same time Sir William Howe was superseded by Clinton, 
who was ordered to concentrate his army at New York and to abandon 
Philadelphia if necessary. Obeying these orders, he sent off his heavy 
baggage and abundant supplies by water and marched with the army 
northward through New Jersey. Washington followed closely, and 
July 28, 1778, forced him to fight at Monmouth, where the Americans 
seemed to have the advantage. Washington wished Lafayette to 

lead the attack, but Charles Lee, just released from a 
Monmouth British prison in which he had been conspiring to betray 

the Americans, claimed the honor, and was placed in com- 
mand. When the British appeared in front of his position, he gave 
way after very little resistance. Washington, preparing to support 
Lee by an attack elsewhere, learned that the advance was falling back. 
Placing his troops across their way he checked the British advance, 
and with the reformed columns of Lee held the enemy at bay until 
night. Next morning the British were gone and reached New York 

While Washington checked the flight of his advance troops he met 
Lee, their commander. Suspecting treachery he broke forth in angry 

reproaches, which posterity has easily forgiven. Lee 

Charles Lee could do nothing less than ask for an investigation, and a 

ismisse court martial suspended him a year for disobedience and 

Army. "misbehavior" before the enemy. During the year he 

sent congress an improper letter, and for that was dis- 
missed. He was a vain and showy man, whose tall talking won 
him much respect when he threw in his fortunes with the Ameri- 
cans. The men who could understand him soon discovered that he 
wished to supplant Washington. 

Minor Events in the North, 17 78-1 782 

Jhe battle of Monmouth was the last general engagement in the 
North, but it was followed by several minor incidents which history 
cannot ignore. One was the operations of a French fleet 
Siege of under Count d'Estaing which arrived at Philadelphia 
iiine days too late to intercept Lord Howe's squadron, 
sent to convoy General Howe's store ships back to New York. 
Prevented from following them by the assurances of the pilots that 
his largest frigates could not enter New York harbor, d'Estaing decided 
to attack Newport, Rhode Island, which the British had held since 
December 6, 1776. He had 4000 French troops on board, and 9000 
Americans, mostly New England militia, were gathered at Providence 


t J cooperate in the attack. As the British had but 6000 men in New- 
port, a great success seemed certain. Misunderstandings occurred 
from the first between the Count and SulUvan, the American com- 
mander, but the French troops were landed, and the initial stages of the 
siege were entered. Then Howe's British fleet appeared and offered 
battle, and the Frenchman, embarking his soldiers, sailed out to meet 
him. As the ships maneuvered for position a storm broke and both 
fleets must look to their safety. D'Estaing went to Boston for re- 
pairs, and his attempt against Newport was not renewed. Meanwhile 
Sullivan had invested the place and carried most of its outworks. He 
and his officers protested against the departure of the French ; and 
when they heard that Clinton was sending a fleet and army to raise the 
siege, they withdrew from Rhode Island lest they be surrounded. 
An irritating controversy arose over the conduct of d'Estaing, and 
Washington, as well as the continental congress, interfered to make 
peace. In November the French fleet went to the West Indies, where 
its operations, though not briUiant, served to draw off part of the 
British forces from New York and left the Americans for a time in 
comparative peace. In 1779 the British army at Newport was with- 
drawn for the campaign against the Carolinas. 

Reduced to inactivity, Clinton was fain to resort to the destruction 
of the towns he could reach by water. In May, 1779, Norfolk and 
Portsmouth, in Virginia, were destroyed, a hundred vessels 
were taken, and 3000 hogsheads of tobacco were carried j^^^^ ^ 
back to New York. In July following, Tryon, command- 
ing a body of tories, raided New Haven, Fairfield, and Norwalk, all 
in Connecticut, leaving smoking ruins behind him. Such operations 
did not promote the conquest of the Americans, and only served to 
increase the horrors of war. In the same year Clinton moved up the 
Hudson and took Stony Point and Verplanck's Point in ^ p^^^^ 
the Highlands. Two months later the former was re- ° ^ 
taken by General Anthony Wayne in a well-planned night attack, 
which greatly enhanced Wayne's reputation. But the Americans 
could not hold the place, and it was reduced to ruins. 

West Point, several miles higher up the river, was the chief reliance 
for keeping back the enemy, and its command was given to Benedict 
Arnold. This pathetic figure now approaches the end of 
a thorny path whose exit was complete calamity. No ^^'^q^^jj* 
man in the army had better reason to complain of his ment. 
treatment. After the death of Montgomery he was the 
life of the stout resistance in Canada, but he was passed 'bver by con- 
gress when it promoted four less deserving brigadiers to the rank of 
major-general. At the time he was being investigated by a court 
martial on charges which were plainly the result of spite and of which 
he was completely exonerated. After that he was made a major- 
general, but was not given the rank to which his former rating entitled 


him. In the Saratoga campaign he was the soul of the American 
army, and his leg was shivered as he charged recklessly in the second 
battle of Freeman's Farm. Gates hated him cordially, and Washing- 
ton, too just to ignore his merit, made him commander in Philadelphia, 
after the withdrawal of Howe. Arnold was tactless, and soon quarreled 
with congress, whose former treatment he openly resented. Charges 
were brought against him, but an acquittal was had on all but two, 
and these were so trivial that they should have been ignored. But 
his enemies triumphed, and it was ordered that he be reprimanded. 
Washington, in executing the judgment, made the reprimand a eulogy : 
but Arnold was not pacified. During his residence in Philadelphia 
he had married Margaret Shippen, a noted wit and beauty in tory 
circles ; and an extravagant manner of living had run him into debt. 
In disgust at his treatment by congress he decided to betray the cause 
he served. He applied to Washington for the command of West 
Point, the request was granted, and a bargain was made by which the 
post was to be given up for 10,000 guineas and a brigadier-general's 

Major John Andre was Clinton's adjutant. He was young, intelli- 
gent, and socially popular ; but he did not mind playing spider to 

Arnold. While the British army was in Philadelphia 
ArnolV^ he was a friend of Margaret Shippen, and he conducted 

the correspondence by which Arnold was led into mischief. 
September 21, 1780, the two men met near Haverstraw to complete 
the treason. Arnold handed over plans of West Point, with a de- 
scription of its garrison, and gave Andre a pass to return to New York. 
As the latter approached "Sleepy Hollow," near Tarrytown, he was 
stopped and searched by three "skinners," American marauders, who 
found his papers and carried him to the nearest American post. A 
report was sent to Arnold, who fled quickly to the British. Andre was 
tried as a spy. He urged that he was a soldier on regular service and 
demanded to be treated as a prisoner of war ; but the court martial 
held that wearing a disguise and carrying concealed papers fixed his 
status as a spy, and he was executed. Washington would have ex- 
changed him for Arnold, but CHnton felt obliged to protect the traitor 
whom he had led into his present plight. West Point was saved to the 
Americans, but the price promised was paid. Arnold's foolish error 
blasted a brilliant career. Had he retired from the army as a protest 
against his wrongs, the justice of the future would soon have brought 
him vindication. In the British army his position was not pleasant, 
and it was said that just before he died he called for his old American 
uniform, saying, "May God forgive me for ever putting on any 


The War in the West 

Before the revolution began, hardy settlers had crossed the Alle- 
ghanies from both Virginia and North Carolina. The Indians saw 
their advent with alarm, and in 1774 the settlements of 
Kentucky were ravaged. Governor Dunmore, of Virginia, 1.^°^^ , 
marched against them and forced them to make peace -v^ar." 
after a sharp defeat, the Indians relinquishing their claims 
to Kentucky. This outbreak was known as "Lord Dunmore's War." 
When the colonists began to resist England, both sides sought to 
concihate the savages of the West. The Indians, however, leaned 
toward the stronger side, and with British aid the Cherokees in 1776 
began hostilities. The most exposed part of the frontier 
was the Watauga valley, in North Carolina. The in- 1[?|® 
habitants had warning, and retired safely into stockades, conquered. ' 
North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia sent out 
bodies of militia which ravaged the Indian towns, and the Cherokees 
made peace. For a time the Watauga settlements had relief, but 
Kentucky continued to suffer from the Indians north of the Ohio. 

The British also had influence with the Iroquois, who aided Carleton 
in 1776 and Burgoyne in 1777. After Saratoga, the savages were not 
needed for large military operations on the Canadian border, 
but they were incited to raid the western settlements of .^ wuev 
New York and Pennsylvania. The most important action 
was a raid into the latter state by Colonel John Butler with a force of 
tories and Seneca Indians. They fought and defeated an American 
force near Wilkesbarre, and then devastated the Wyoming valley at 
leisure. Women and children were slain, and the rich valley was left 
desolate. In the same year, 1779, a band similarly composed inflicted 
ruin nearly as complete on Cherry valley, in central New York. A 
retahatory expedition under General Sullivan laid waste 
the Seneca country and reduced the population to a crowd y^u^ 
of starving fugitives ; but their chieftain, Joseph Brant, 
gathered them into a fort at Niagara and continued the raids against 
the settlements. The employment of Indians by the British was 
strongly condemned by the Americans. The practice of paying them 
for scalps only added to the horrors of the war and did not hasten its 
end. Hamilton, British governor of the Northwest, who paid for 
many scalps, was called the "Hair Buyer." 

After 1776 the Kentuckians were not left free from molestation, and 
this led to an act of retaliation which had a vast significance for the 
"Hair Buyer." The stroke was nothing less than the 
conquest of the Northwest, and George Rogers Clark was Expedition, 
the author of the scheme. In January, 1778, he secured 
from Governor Patrick Henry, of Virginia, a commission as lieutenant- 
colonel with authority to raise 350 men for a secret expedition against 


the British posts north of the Ohio. In May he set out from Wheeling, 
going down the Ohio to the falls, where Louisville -v^as soon to be 
founded. After waiting here a month the expedition proceeded into 
what is now Illinois, directing its course to the French town of Kas- 
kaskia. The place was taken by surprise and without resistance. 
The inhabitants willingly took the oath of allegiance when told that 
France was now an ally of the United States, and when promised 
religious toleration. The people of Cahokia and Vincennes also sub- 
mitted on the same terms. Thus all the settlements of the Illinois 
country passed into the hands of Clark, who had less than 200 men. 

Hamilton, at Detroit, knew how weak was Clark's resources, and re- 
took Vincennes in December. Feeling perfectly secure, he sent away 

all his troops but 80, and awaited the spring. He under- 
The " Hair estimated the determination of his opponent, who on 
Caphired. February 5 set out for Vincennes with 170 men, some of 

them of French blood. Before him the road, 1 70 miles long, 
ran through a flat region, much of it covered by water. Around 
Vincennes the country was a shallow lake through which the com- 
mand waded, sometimes up to the neck. To add to their sufferings, 
their provisions gave out, but luck sent them a deer, and three 
days later they captured an Indian canoe with some food in it. Feb- 
ruary 24 Clark came to Vincennes and invested the fort. Hamilton 
was completely surprised and next day surrendered. There was great 
joy in the western settlements when news came that "the Hair Buyer" 
was taken and sent to Virginia, where he was kept in close confinement. 

The western country was organized as Illinois county, 
Illinois Virginia. The French settlements remained under Ameri- 

°"° ^' can protection until the end of the war, but Detroit con- 

tinued in British hands, and from it went forth many Indian raids. 
Clark, now a brigadier-general, was anxious to take it, but was not 
given the requisite means. 

The Navy in the Revolution 

England's naval superiority gave the United States little opportu- 
nity for achievements at sea ; but small cruisers well commanded 

might inflict severe loss on British merchantmen, and 
Small privateers might operate successfully. In December, 

Privateers. i775> congress ordered thirteen small men-of-war, and 

before the end of the conflict forty-three others had been 
placed on the ocean. Their average number of guns was twenty. 
Many of these ships were captured before they did serious damage 
to the enemy. Besides the continental ships, war vessels were owned 
by all the states except New Jersey and Delaware, but most of the 
state navies were for harbor defense. The ill disguised friendship 
of France early enabled us to use her harbors for the sale of prizes, 


and several cruisers as well as many privateers operated from that 
safe base. Fitted out and furnished with a mongrel crew, such a ship 
would intercept British vessels off the French coast, or in the channel, 
or range along the British shore itself. Great Britain protested vigor- 
ously to France against the abuse of neutrality. Sometimes her com- 
plaints were heard and the American ships were warned to leave ; 
but the Americans invariably came back, and others followed their 
example. When the war had gone on a year London merchants 
estimated their actual losses at £1,800,000, besides having to meet a 
great enhancement of freights and insurance. After the French 
alliance was made the profits from seizing British ships must be shared 
with Frenchmen. New England sent out most of the privateers, and 
her citizens reaped vast profits from the business. 

Of all our naval achievements during the revolution the most not- 
able are associated with the name of John Paul Jones. Scotch by 
birth and christened John Paul, he made several voyages 
to Virginia, where his brother was settled. In 1773 this T°jjgg *" 
brother died, and John Paul inherited his property. About 
this time he changed his name, taking that of his friend Willie Jones 
of Halifax, who was probably that Willie Jones of Halifax, North 
Carolina, who led the radical element in that colony in the days of 
revolution. In December, 1775, he was appointed a lieutenant in 
the infant navy and hoisted the first flag on a regularly commissioned 
American war vessel. A year later he was a captain, and in one ship 
after another displayed great activity and took many prizes. In one 
of them, the Ranger, in 1778 he cruised in the Irish Sea, entered by 
night the harbor of Whitehaven, and captured a sloop-of-war of twenty 
guns. This showed him what could be done by a daring man with a 
small squadron. By much entreaty he at last got from 
the French king four ships, which, added to one of his own, gauadron 
made a squadron to be reckoned with. The largest, the 
Bon Homme Richard, a converted Indiaman, carried 44 guns. Another, 
the Pallas carried 30, and the rest carried 36, 18, and 12 respectively. 
The crew was largely European, but all the ships flew the American flag. 

August 14, 1779, the squadron began its memorable voyage. Pass- 
ing along the west coast of Ireland and Scotland, destroying many 
prizes, it came off the east coast of Scotland, where a stonu frustrated 
Jones's plan to destroy the shipping in Leith harbor. September 23, 
near Hull, he sighted forty merchantmen convoyed by the 
Serapis, mounting 50 guns, and the Countess of Scarborough, ?®^^** °^. 
28 guns. Jones gave chase and selected the Serapis as ^''''pi^- 

his antagonist. He ordered his other ships to do the same, but only 
the Pallas obeyed, her captain giving his attention to the Scarborough. 
The engagement resolved itself into a conflict between the Serapis 
and the Bon Homme Richard. At the first fire two of the American 
guns burst, and Jones, realizing his inferiority in that line determined 


to close and board. At his first attempt the ships did not come 
alongside. Pearson, commanding the Serapis, called out to ask if 
the Richard had struck her colors, and Jones's answer rang back : 
"I have not yet begun to fight." A second attempt to come along- 
side proved successful, and Jones lashed the two ships together 
with his own hands. Then followed a severe hand to hand struggle 
which cleared the deck of the Serapis of defenders. After this had 
gone on for two hours, hand grenades fired the British ship and 
she was forced to strike. Jones's own ship had six feet of water 
in the hold and was on fire. She sank two days later. The Serapis 
and the Scarborough were carried into port as prizes. Jones estab- 
lished the tradition for heroism in the American navy. He was per- 
sonally eccentric, and congress was slow in recognizing his services. 

The participation of France in the war relieved the United States 
of the necessity of contending against England by sea. It also 

promoted the formation of the league of Northern powers 
The League f^j. <' armed neutrality." England used her immense 
Neutrality." i^^val power with little regard to the interests of other 

nations. She impressed seamen and seized neutral 
goods not contraband as freely as she found them on foreign ships. 
The other nations were equally interested in the policy that "free 
ships malie free goods," except as regards contraband articles. 
This principle was asserted before our revolution by individual 
writers and even by states, but it had not the force behind it necessary 
to secure its acceptance. In 1778 France, whose goods were now 
being seized, asked Russia to head a movement for united protest. 
The request was accepted, and out of it proceeded the "Armed Neu- 
trality" agreement, signed at first by Russia, Sweden, and Denmark, 
but later accepted by Prussia, the Netherlands, the German Empire, 
Portugal, Naples, Turkey, and the United States. The acceptance 
of the league by the Netherlands led England to make war on that 
power, although another reason was given for this breach of an ancient 
friendship. Thus England's war against the colonies had enlarged 
its scope until she saw arrayed against her, besides t-he colonies them- 
selves, France, Spain, and Holland. 

The Campaign in the South, i 778-1 781 

Having failed to conquer the North, the British concluded to make 
their next attempt in the South. They were told that the interior 

parts, inhabited by small farmers who had not keenly felt 
British the restrictions on commerce, were largely loyal, and would 

change welcome the arrival of a force strong enough to afford 

Attack. them protection. The plan adopted was to begin with 

Georgia, the weakest of the Southern states, and to roll up 
the South from that point. Accordingly, in December, 1778, the work 


began with the seizure of Savannah, from which place strong columns 
proceeded to occupy the interior. To deal with the situation General 
Lincoln was sent to assume command in the South. He found the 
British general, Prevost, in the act of subduing South Carolina and 
was able to drive him away from the vicinity of Charleston. Then 
d'Estaing appeared off the coast, and a cooperative attack on Savannah 
was begun. Here, as at Newport, the French admiral was soon out 
of sympathy with the American general, and sailed away, alleging 
that he could not expose his ships to the autumn storms of a dangerous 
coast. As soon as he was gone Clinton came south with a strong 
fleet and an army of 7000 men and began to besiege Charleston. 
Lincoln unwisely allowed himself to be shut up in the city, 
and in May, 1780, was forced to surrender with 5000 xaken^ "'^ 
men. South Carolina was now at the mercy of the enemy, 
who marched at will through the interior. The governor of the 
state fled to Philadelphia to implore aid from congress, and no Ameri- 
can army worthy of the name existed in the state. A mere remnant 
was in the field under Colonel Buford, but Tarleton's Legion over- 
whelmed it at Waxhaw. Some of the Americans escaped, but 500 
asked for quarter. For reply, Tarleton fell on them with sabers and 
pistols, leaving 113 dead and 150 so badly wounded that they could 
not be moved. This harsh affair and other less notable examples of 
British cruelty cowed the people. But much resentment was also 
stimulated, and the result was the organization of several partisan 
bands which kept up a vigilant warfare against such small detach- 
ments of the enemy as fortune sent their way. Of the partisan leaders 
the most famous were Sumter, Marion, Pickens, Clarke, and Davie, 
the last being of North Carolina. Clinton did not esteem these 
bands highly. He thought the province well reconquered, and early 
in June returned to New York, leaving Cornwallis with 
5000 men to hold what had been taken and to extend the g^^^^" 
conquest into North Carolina. The British were pleased. 
At the end of four years' fighting, one colony, Georgia, had been 
forced to receive her repudiated royal governor, and in another the 
revolutionary government had collapsed. 

To save the situation, congress sent General Gates into the South. 
The appointment was against the advice of Washington, who suggested 
Greene; but the "hero of Saratoga" was still popular. 
Charles Lee, who knew him well, offered this advice: camden* 
"Take care that your Northern laurels do not change 
to Southern willows." Gates had 3000 troops, half of them militia, 
and in August attacked Camden, an important position in central 
South Carolina held by Lord Rawdon. Had he moved promptly, 
he might have won the fight, for his force was the stronger; but by 
delaying he allowed Cornwallis to arrive with reenforcements, and the 
battle, fought August 16, was a crushing defeat. The militia, from 


Virginia and North Carolina, fled at the first attack, and the regulars 
were surrounded and badly cut to pieces, while Kalb, who fought 
bravely, was killed. The total American loss was 2000 killed, wounded, 
and captured; that of the British was 300. Gates rode sixty miles 
that summer's day, and did not cease his flight until in four days 
he reached Hillsborough, North Carolina, 180 miles from the scene 
of his defeat. He tried to call out more militia to oppose the enemy, 
but his day was past. December 2, he was succeeded by General 

Before that time, the British had met their first check in the South, 
at King's Mountain, October 7, 1780. After Camden, Cornwallis 

moved into North Carolina, gathering food and horses. 
Battle of jjg halted at Charlotte, — where the Mecklenburg Reso- 
Mountain. l^tions of May 31, 1775, were adopted, — while Major 

Ferguson, with 1000 tories, scoured the country to the 
west, collecting supplies and enlisting recruits ; for that country was 
strongly loyal. The whigs fled before him, and alarm spread even 
to the transmontane settlements of Watauga and Kentucky. From 
this distant region, bands of mounted men, under leaders of their 
own choosing, marched eastward, September 26, to bag Ferguson. 
Having crossed the mountains, they were joined by 510 North Caro- 
linians and 400 South Carolinians, a total force of 1800. Ferguson 
heard of their approach and moved toward Charlotte. Thirty-five 
miles from that place, he came to King's Mountain, the northern 
end of which is cut by the state line. It is a hill sixty feet high, 
flat at the top, a third of a mile long, and Ferguson believed it 
impregnable. On its top he placed his 900 men and awaited 
attack. The whigs were riding hard behind, and October 7, a 
picked band of the best mounted arrived at the hill, surrounded its 
base, and began a vigorous attack. On alternate sides they 
charged up the slopes and then fell back, using whatever cover 
they could find. Early in the fight, Ferguson was killed, and at 
the end of an hour the white flag was raised: 700 survivors surren- 
dered; the rest were slain. It was a small battle, reckoned by the 
numbers engaged ; but it was very important. It forced Cornwallis 
back into South Carolina, it gave courage to the whigs in the 
Carolinas, and it checked the advance of the British until Greene 
could arrive and organize his defense. It marked the change of 
the tide in the South. 

Greene, now in command of the American army, had 2300 men, 
half of them regulars. Cornwallis outnumbered him, and all his 

troops were trained soldiers. Greene, therefore, did not 
Cow ^ens attack, but in his camp at Cheraw awaited the purpose 

of his opponents. To encourage the whigs west of him, he 
threw out General Morgan with 600 men to threaten the British post 
at Ninety-six. This divided the American army, and Cornwallis, 



at Winnsboro, tried to get between the two wings. He sent Tarleton 
to drive Morgan off to the Northwest, while he himself moved north- 
ward. Morgan was an excellent officer and was not to be caught 
napping. He had recently been joined by Pickens with several 
hundred men, and fell back rapidly. But January 17, he offered 
battle at Cowpens. Tarleton's troopers were exhausted by a five 
hours' march, but they charged impetuously, thinking the Americans 
would flee before them. Morgan's army was drawn up in three lines, 
the first a body of skirmishers who were ordered to begin firing when 
the enemy was at fifty yards and to fall back on the second line, 
composed of 270 militiamen under Pickens. This line was to await 
the approach of the British, fire two volleys, and then fall back to 
the third line, which contained 290 Maryland regulars, two companies 
of Virginia militia, and a company of Georgians. Morgan had a 
total force of 940, and Tarleton had 11 50. 

When the first and second lines began to fall back as ordered, the 
British believed the victory won and advanced in disorder. To 
their surprise they found the third line in good formation 
and resisting them hotly. Thrown into disorder, they ^efe^ated 
sought to restore a regular line under a rain of bullets, 
when Pickens's men came up on their left flank, while a small 
body of cavalry, hitherto out of sight, came up on their right. Finding 
themselves surrounded, 600 troopers threw down their arms after 
184 had been killed or wounded. The Americans also took some 
important stores, and their loss was 72 killed or wounded. The battle 
had two important effects : it showed that the Americans could 
fight effectively when well led, and it nettled Cornwallis and induced 
him to march far astray into North Carolina in an unwise effort to 
repay on Morgan the defeat of Tarleton. 

The situation was now critical for the Americans, since 125 miles 
separated Greene and Morgan, and Cornwallis was between them, 
about fifty miles from the latter. Operations resolved themselves 
into a race across North Carolina, the two American wings ever 
drawing closer together and the British commander bending every 
effort to crush Morgan while still detached. Greene knew the danger, 
and, sending the left wing northward, rode across the intervening 
country and joined the right wing January 30. Morgan was a 
soldier by instinct, and his alertness now saved the day. He beat 
Tarleton at Cowpens in the forenoon and began his retreat in the 
afternoon of January 17. Seven days later he crossed the Catawba. 
Cornwallis was then only twenty miles behind, but he had to halt 
two days to collect supplies, and when he carrie to the Catawba, 
floods had raised the water so high that he must wait five days before 
he could cross. Fifty miles to the northeast is the Yadkin, which 
Greene, now in command, crossed February 3, Cornwallis coming up 
in time to seize a few of his wagons ; but here again the rising of the 


river gave the Americans an advantage. At Guilford Court House 
their two wings united; but Greene did not feel strong enough to 
risk a battle, and marched for the Dan river, which he reached safely. 
Meanwhile, militia from North Carolina and Virginia had been sent 
to him, and with his army raised to 4400 men he recrossed the Dan 
and offered battle at Guilford Court House. Cornwallis's force was 
only 2200, but it was composed of regulars. 

March 15, 1781, the two armies came to blows. The' Americans 
were in three lines, with intervals of 300 yards. The first was composed 

of North Carolina militia, the second of Virginia militia, 
Battle of 2Lnd the third of the continentals, in numbers 4400. On 
Court°'^ either flank was a small body of cavalry. The first was 

House. ordered to fire two volleys and retire behind the third 

line ; but at sight of the British it fired only a partial 
volley and iied. A few of these men, however, joined other bodies 
of troops and fought through the battle. The second line gave way 
before a bayonet charge, but did not leave the field. Against the third 
line, Cornwallis found it necessary to put forth his best efforts. He 
was at first driven back, but rallied his troops for a desperate attack, 
before which Greene withdrew in good order, but with the loss of his 
artillery. The Americans lost 1307, including the 1046 militia who 
dispersed to their homes. The British lost 532, and, after vainly 
waiting several days to see if the inhabitants would come to the 
standard, fell back to Wilmington, where they found a fleet with 
supplies. Greene followed for a while, offering battle, but when 
Cornwallis's destination became evident, he turned against the interior 
posts of South Carolina. The good generalship of Greene and Morgan, 
the long and tiresome marches in the North Carolina forests, and the 
unwillingness of the inhabitants to join the British, had shown here, 
as formerly in New Jersey, that the British could not expect to recover 
any other part of the country than that which they held by actual 

News that Cornwallis was sent back to his ships at Wilmington, 
and that Greene was coming to drive Lord Rawdon out of the interior 

of South Carolina, aroused the American spirit in that 
Greene in state. It brought grave alarm to Rawdon, commanding 
Carolina. ^^ South Carolina, who was at Camden with 1400 men, 

while small garrisons held Ninety-six and other posts. 
Greene proposed to strike at Camden first, and ordered a South 
Carolina force under Marion, Sumter, and Lee to cut the communi- 
cations between that place and Charleston and join him for the 
final stroke. Meanwhile, he took up his position at Hobkirk's Hill, 
two miles from Camden. Rawdon dared not let the two American 
divisions unite, and marched out to crush Greene, March 25. Greene 
awaited the attack, but was driven from his position after a sharp 
engagement. His army, however, was still intact, and Rawdon, 


after burning Camden, fell back to Monck's Corners, 30 miles from 
Charleston. Post after post was now retaken, until at last only 
Ninety-six held out in the western counties. Greene besieged it so 
closely that Rawdon with two new regiments, just landed 
at Charleston, marched to relieve it. Greene raised the Hg^idrk^'s 
siege and eluded his enemy, who destroyed Ninety-six rather ^^ 
than undertake to defend it. The British power was now 
driven back toward the coast as far as Orangeburg, and against this 
Greene, his army recruited to 2600, marched late in August, 1781. 
Stewart, the commander, fell back, but was overtaken at Eutaw 
Springs, September 8. Greene attacked and seemed to have the 
victory, but Stewart rallied his troops at a brick house and drove the 
Americans from the field ; but he was forced to retire, with a loss of 
700, to Charleston. In Georgia a similar movement had 
resulted in driving the British into Savannah. In General British 
Greene's nine months' warfare in the South, he fought four ^"c^^j.^^g*i^ 
important battles, lost them all, and yet gained, in the ton and 
long run, all the results of victory. This singular fact Savannah, 
was due to his steady self-control and his ability to 
bring his army out of a repulse without demoralization. 

While Greene's work thus progressed, the army which he declined 
to follow to Wilmington was approaching its doom in Virginia. Corn- 
wallis left the Cape Fear, April 25, and, marching leisurely 
through eastern North Carolina, reached Petersburg, jn^virgtnia. 
Virginia, May 20. Here he found over 3000 British 
troops under Arnold, who for five months had marched at will through 
the region adjacent to the James river. Richmond and Manchester 
had been burned, and Portsmouth had been fortified as a base of 
operations. Harrying Virginia, however, did not secure its submis- 
sion. When the redcoats had gone, the people resumed their former 
defiance. At Petersburg Cornwallis superseded Arnold, and at the 
head of 5000 troops turned toward Richmond, where Lafayette, 
commanding the American forces, lay with half as many troops. 
The British general must have felt that the province was nearly 
conquered, since it had in the field to oppose him, at the end of a 
five months' campaign, in its very center, no more than 2500 men. 
It was, in fact, long marches rather than men and muskets that 
put an end to the British power in America. 

Lafayette left Richmond as the enemy approached, and Cornwallis 
sent Tarleton to break up the legislature at Charlottesville. The 
task was accomplished brilliantly, and Governor Jefferson barely 
escaped from his residence at Monticello ere it was surrounded by 
the British troopers. Cornwallis, meanwhile, continued to chase 
Lafayette in the region north of Richmond. Convinced at last that 
the pursuit was useless, he withdrew to Portsmouth, and in August 
moved his base to Yorktown, which he fortified. With him were 


7000 men. Lafayette, with his forces reenforced to 3500, was between 
Yorktown and Richmond. 

At this time Washington, with about 6000 men, lay watching Clinton 
in New York, and Rochambeau, with 5000, was at Newport. About 
the time that Cornwallis moved to Yorktown came a 
Cornw IS ig|-j-gj. from Count de Grasse in the West Indies offering 
the cooperation of his neet during the summer. Here was 
a brilliant opportunity, and Washington seized it. De Grasse was 
requested to go to the Chesapeake, blockade Cornwallis, and drive 
off a relieving squadron ; Rochambeau, by orders of his own govern- 
ment under the command of Washington, was brought to New York, 
where, by feigned activity, Clinton was made to believe that he was to 
be besieged ; and finally, with admirable celerity, a combined American 
and French force numbering 6000 was moved to the head of Chesa- 
peake Bay and thence by water to the James river, where it landed, 
and, joined by Lafayette, instituted the siege of Yorktown, September 
2, 1 781. To his great contentment Washington found that De Grasse 
was already at hand and that the fleet had brought 3000 additional 
French troops who were at his disposal. Thus Cornwallis's 7500 
men in Yorktown were surrounded by 16,000 enemies, of whom 7800 
were French regulars. 

Clinton, alarmed for Cornwallis's fate, sent Arnold with 2000 men 
to raid New London, hoping thereby to draw Washington from Vir- 
ginia. It was the region in which Arnold was born, 
Arnold at ^^^ j^^ ^^jj ^^^ spare it. A part of New London and 
London. thirteen ships were burned. Fort Griswold, on the other 
side of the river, held off a storming column until resistance 
was impossible. When it was taken, Colonel Ledyard, in command, 
and nearly a hundred of his men were cut down in cold blood. But 
Arnold was unable to penetrate further into Connecticut and returned 
to New York, his ships laden with spoils. Clinton also sought to 
aid Cornwallis by sea. Admiral Graves, with five ships, sailed for the 
Chesapeake. Within the capes was De Grasse, who came out and gave 
battle so vigorously that Graves returned to New York much disabled. 
Another expedition for the relief of Yorktown was fitted out at New 
York, but it sailed too late to be of service to Cornwallis. 

Meantime, the siege went on vigorously. The Americans and 
French seized the high ground around Yorktown, and their first 
line, along the entire British front, was completed by 
Y(M-ktown September 29. Immediately a first parallel was begun, 
and then a second, which by October 12 brought the 
besiegers to within 300 yards of the British lines. Two redoubts 
stood in their way. Since they commanded his own lines, Cornwallis 
would not abandon them, and until they were taken, the American 
lines could not be advanced. They must, therefore, be stormed, and 
the task was divided between the French and the American troops. 



October 14, in the night, a French detachment under Colonel Deux- 
Ponts carried one, and an American force under Colonel Alexander 
Hamilton carried the other. Cornwallis's defenses were now at the 
mercy of his opponents, and he tried to escape across the river to 
Gloucester ; but a storm blew his boats down the stream after only 
a portion of his force had crossed. His defenses crumbling under the 
hot American fire, he could resist no longer, and on the 17th raised a 
white flag and accepted Washington's terms. October iq, the sur- 
render was signed, the land forces becoming prisoners to the United 




States and the naval forces prisoners to France. The total number 
surrendered, including seamen, was 8000, and 580 of the British had 
been killed or wounded in the siege. The combined French and 
American loss was 274. At the moment of surrender 
Cornwallis pleaded illness and sent his sword by General 
O'Hara. By Washington's direction it was received 
by General Lincoln, who had been forced to surrender 
Charleston, and was by him handed back to O'Hara. 

After Yorktown the military history of the war is of slight interest. 
Both sides realized that the struggle must end with victory for the 
Americans. After six years' fighting and at great expense, 
England had proved her inability to subdue the country, ^j^" ^^^ 
Each great expedition into the interior became a failure 
when deprived of succor from the coast ; and such would be the result 
indefinitely. In confession of her failure, all the Southern posts 
were abandoned, one after the other, — Wilmington in January, Savan- 

October 19, 


nah in July, and Charleston in December, 1782. In New York 
Clinton awaited the result of peace negotiations, which were already 

The Treaty of Peace 

The surrender of Cornwallis broke the English resistance. Before 
it occurred, the English nation was tired of a war which only accumu- 
lated debt without winning victories. March 5, 1782, 
Beaten^^ parliament passed a bill to enable the king to make peace. 
Fifteen days later Lord North resigned, and the whigs, 
under the leadership of Rockingham, formed a new ministry, with the 
understanding that American independence should be acknowledged. 
It was a bitter pill for the king, whose plans for a personally directed 
ministry was staked on the issue of the war. That he had lost was 
the only grain of comfort a discerning Englishman could find in the 
situation. In July, Rockingham died and Shelburne became prime 
minister, but the policy of peace was not changed. 

After some preliminary inquiries in reference to the terms likely 

to be demanded, negotiations began at Paris in the summer of 1782. 

To Franklin, our minister to France, were added, as Ameri- 

w!.„f,T" can negotiators, John Jay, who for a long time had been 

missioners. r . , ®, 1 • • 1 r^ • 1 n r 

fruitlessly seekmg to mduce Spam to become an ally of 

the United States ; John Adams, minister to Holland ; and Henry 
Laurens, a prisoner in England until the negotiations were nearly 
completed. Great Britain was represented by Oswald, a Scotch 
merchant who was in close communication with Shelburne. 

The American commissioners were instructed to proceed in open 
cooperation with France, but Jay satisfied himself that Vergennes, 
directing the policy of France, would sacrifice the interests 
Separate q( ^}^g United States, and he began to favor a separate 
wUh" '^ ^°^^ treaty with England. Personally, Vergennes seems to 
England. have been disinterested, but he was under obligations to 
Spain, who feared to enhance the power of the new re- 
public in the West. In September came from him an informal propo- 
sition that the region south of the Ohio be set aside for the Indians, 
part of it under the protection of Spain and part under that of the 
United States. At the same time it was intimated that at the conclu- 
sion of peace, France would support England's claim to the territory 
north of the Ohio. This scheme, if adopted, would leave the United 
States merely a seacoast power. If it should come before a conference 
composed of all the parties to the war, it could not fail to have the 
support of Spain and England, and, with France's additional advocacy, 
must be adopted. Franklin trusted Vergennes, but the facts of the 
case, ably set forth by Jay, induced him to consent to make a separate 
arrangement with England, which was pointedly against the instruc- 
tions of the American commissioners. An intermediary was sent to 


England, where the ministry, glad to settle the difficulty with one 
power so that they might be the more free to deal with the others, 
fell in with the suggestion, and on that basis negotiations proceeded 

Vergennes's conduct has occasioned much discussion. Some 
persons have supposed that he wished to keep America dependent 
on France, others that he acted in good faith and was unjustly sus- 
pected by Jay and Adams. He undoubtedly hoped that 
Louisiana would some day come back to France, and this ^ nT""!^^ ^ 
fact has suggested that he wished to keep the United States 
out of the Mississippi Valley in order that it might be more easily 
secured by France. The theory, however, does not explain why he 
should have been willing to enhance the power of England in the north- 
ern part of the valley. Probably the most acceptable explanation is 
that he cared little about the disposition of the interior, and merely 
accepted the proposed arrangement to please Spain, to whose interest 
alone it was that England should have the Northwest ; Vergennes's 
indifference in the matter is shown by his calm acquiescence when in 
December he learned from Franklin that the American commis- 
sioners, on November 30, had concluded a separate treaty with Eng- 
land to be effective when peace should have been made between 
France and England. 

This treaty, after recognizing the independence of the United States 
dealt with four principal heads, each of which had been fully discussed. 
The boundary was all we could have desired. On the 
northeast it ran up the St. Croix river to the source, J^g^rgat 
north to the highlands separating the tributaries of the 
St. Lawrence from the streams flowing into the Atlantic, thence with 
the highlands to the forty-fifth parallel, and along that to the St. 
Lawrence. It was then to pass along the middle of rivers . 

and lakes to the northwest corner of the Lake of the °"" ^"^^* 
Woods and thence due west to the Mississippi, down which it went 
to the thirty-first parallel and along that to the Chattahoochee, thence 
southward to the source of the Flint, whence it ran in a straight 
line to the mouth of the St. Mary's, and thence to the Atlantic. The 
British posts within this line were to be given up as soon as possi- 
ble. A secret clause provided that if in the general peace England 
retained West Florida, its northern boundary should be a line from the 
mouth of the Yazoo east to the Appalachicola. The navigation of 
the Mississippi was to be open to both nations. No arrangements 
were made for running the boundary line, and as geographical knowl- 
edge was then imperfect, trouble occurred when the succeeding genera- 
tion came to interpret that part of the treaty which referred to the 
northeastern and the northwestern boundaries. 

The Americans were anxious that the New Englanders should 
continue to have their former facilities in the fisheries, and after much 


difficulty it was agreed that the Americans might fish on the Banks 
of Newfoundland and wherever else they had been in the habit of fish- 
ing, and that they might land and cure fish in any unin- 
Fisheries habited parts of Nova Scotia, Labrador, and the Magdalen 
Islands, but not in Newfoundland. For this concession, so 
important to New England, Adams's pertinacity was chiefly responsible. 
On boundaries and fisheries, the treaty thus favored the United 
States. On the two other important points of discussion, the pay- 
ment of British debts and compensation of the loyalists 
British it ought, thought the British commissioners, to favor 

Debts and England. But their contention was vigorously resisted, 
tion t^ the " Franklin thought the debts were properly canceled, be- 
Loyalists. cause parliament, by closing the American ports and 
inflicting the horrors of war, had destroyed the power of 
the debtors to pay these obligations. Adams and Jay were anxious 
to preserve the credit of Americans, and the demands of the British 
were accepted, at least negatively. It was agreed that no legal im- 
pediment should be placed in the way of the payment of any debts 
owed by American to British subjects. As to compensating the loyal- 
ists, the commissioners held out a long time. King and ministers 
were insistent ; for they believed that England was in honor bound to 
succor those whose fortunes had been seized because they were true 
to the crown. The Americans were equally unyielding, because they 
looked on the loyalists as wicked conspirators, authors of much blood- 
shed, and proper victims of the popular wrath. In one of the dis- 
cussions of the subject, the American commissioners said that congress 
could not order a state to repeal its confiscation laws, and that the 
limit of its authority was to recommend a repeal. The English com- 
missioners, anxious to close the negotiations, caught at this expression, 
and it was agreed that congress would make the desired recommenda- 
tion. The result was a double interpretation. Englishmen, under 
the necessity of defending the treaty, assured the public that the ad- 
vice of congress would be received by the states as binding. The 
American commissioners authorized no such impression. When, as 
later happened, the states paid no attention to the advice of congress, 
the British public charged the United States with breach of faith. 

When this preliminary treaty was announced in parliament, there 
was an outburst of anger which produced a change of ministry. Hart- 
ley was sent to Paris to replace Oswald, and he was ordered 
A General to make better terms. He did his best, but the American 
s'^^r^'b commissioners would not give more than they had already 
3. 1783. promised, and September 3, 1783, when a general peace was 

signed by all parties to the war, the treaty completed on 
November 30, 1782, was accepted as defining the political relations 
between England and her former colonies. It did not deal with com- 
mercial matters, a subject reserved for much irritating discussion in 
the future. 


Civil Progress during the Revolution 

The continental congress was a revolutionary body, and derived 
its authority from the success of the revolution. Since the Articles 
of Confederation were not adopted until 1781 the war was 
all but won under the sole direction of this body. It J^^ Author- 
was composed of delegates chosen and paid by the states, continental 
and its votes were generally in accordance with instruc- Congress, 
tions from the states. It did not levy taxes, direct or 
indirect, but merely made requisitions on the states for funds needed. 
It was little more than a convention of ambassadors from states acting 
together in a league or confederacy. This loose form of union was 
only slightly strengthened by the Articles of Confederation (see page 
238). So weak a congress inevitably encountered many difficulties. 
It always lacked money and was forced to borrow at home and 
abroad and to issue paper currency which eventually became 

The congress realized its inherent weakness and became so accus- 
tomed to it that it almost ceased to struggle against fate. It was 
badly organized, though it is difficult to see how a body 
with no more power to make itself obeyed could have pre- „" coner'ess 
pared a better organization. Each state had a vote, each 
was jealous of its own interests, and the defection of any one would 
have been a serious calamity to the common cause. Nearly every 
vote on a debatable question resulted in compromise, or in a decision 
to do nothing. Under these circumstances the personnel of congress 
deteriorated ; for the capable men preferred to serve the states rather 
than continue to sit in the body of do-nothings in Philadelphia. 

The state governments varied in character in accordance with local 
conditions, but in New England they were more democratic than 
elsewhere. Thus, in New England, the executive was 
chosen by the voters, in New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, "^^^ 
Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia by one or both houses . state**^ 
of the legislature, in Pennsylvania by a council chosen by Government 
the electors, and in New York by the freeholders worth 
£100 or more. No state had universal manhood suffrage. Three, 
New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Georgia, required a voter to be 
a taxpayer ; other states had a property qualification. The manner 
in which the royal governors had interfered in politics, proroguing 
assemblies, deferring elections, and continuing in existence houses 
which did their will, had created by reaction a strong love of frequent 
elections. Accordingly in nine states the governor was to be elected 
annually, in New York, Pennsylvania, and Delaware triennally, and 
in South Carolina biennially. In six states both houses of the as- 
sembly were to be elected annually, and in two more, Connecticut 


and Rhode Island, the lower house was to be chosen semi-annually. 
South Carolina elected assemblies biennially, and the other states. 
New York, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia elected the lower houses 
annually, and the upper houses for longer terms. 

In the beginning of the revolution little was said about sovereignty. 
The common danger was the great fact of the time, and men were 

chiefly concerned about how to secure enough union to 
eientv °^^'^' ™^^^ ^^ effectively. But as time passed, and the central 

power became more and more a fact, and as a group of 
leaders continually urged that it ought to exercise many of the powers 
then exercised by the states, a disposition was manifest to define 
more closely the powers of the states. Thus arose the contention 
that sovereignty rested with states. It was supported by the logic 
of the situation. Far larger numbers of people loved the states 
than loved the central power. The politicians of the day had been 
bred under a system of state politics, and these politicians not only 
controlled the states, but they made up the very membership of the 
continental congress. The result was seen in the committee of con- 
gress which prepared the Articles of Confederation. They voted down 
every effort of a few enlightened men to establish a central government 
with vital control of taxation, and devised a confederacy without the 
right to make its ordinary laws respected. Thus the belief in state 
sovereignty got a strong support in the day. We shall soon see that 
its inherent practical weakness proved its own undoing. 

The state constitutions usually contained bills of rights; for it 
was to the state that the citizen was to look for guarantees of life and 

property. The pre-revolutionary contention was that 
^f"th*'°°^ the colonies should not be subject to legislation by parlia- 
States. ment but should make laws for themselves. They were 

not now apt to lay aside this contention in order to create 
a congress which might take over the function just denied to 
parliament. It took years of confusion to make it evident that 
the small and disunited states were not able to establish a successful 
government in general affairs. At present no such conviction existed, 
except in the minds of a few intelligent ones to whom the majority 
paid little attention. 

It was natural that the government should be republican. So far 
as internal feelings were concerned, it had ever been republican. The 

monarchy had been, in the minds of the people, an affliction, 
Republican- ^ gjgj^ ^j oppression. Washington, it is said, refused a 
gnt_ suggestion that he might become a king. Nobody will 

believe that he was ever willing to be king ; but it seems 
certain that if he had appeared in that capacity his popularity would 
have dissolved in a day. The example of a numerous people setting 
out on a separate course as a nation with the flag of a republic over 
them aroused grave apprehensions in Europe. No great nation then 


flew such a flag. Switzerland was not a case in point, since it was 
divided by mountains into natural states and protected by its physi- 
cal inaccessibility from outside attacks. 

The revolution had many leaders from the older politicians, but its 
fundamental support was the mass of small farmers. As a popular 
movement it aroused the apprehension of the wealthy 
classes. It was one thing to establish a republic and Conserva- 
another to attempt an absolute democracy. Moreover, Radical Re- 
to hold that all men should participate equally in govern- publicans. 
ment was against the practice of any colony. The question 
was debated long in the bodies that made the state constitutions, and 
the division between democratic whigs and conservative whigs which 
then appeared was a forerunner of the party divisions which began 
in the first years under the national constitution. The question 
hinged on the suffrage and qualification for officeholders. As already 
said (page 217), the suffrage was everywhere restricted in some way. 
The conservatives were able to force a compromise which gave them 
a firmer control of the upper house of the legislature than of the lower 
house. In some cases this was by requiring that a member of this 
house should own a relatively large amount of property, or that only 
well-to-do men should vote for him. In some cases the upper house 
was appointed by the lower, and in Maryland it was chosen by an 
electoral commission selected for that purpose by the freeholders. 
While the war lasted it was not advisable for the whigs to wrangle over 
these points, but there came a day when the compromises of the revolu- 
tion were no longer acceptable, and one by one the old restrictions on 
equal participation in government were removed. This democratic 
movement belongs to the history of the second generation after the 
revolution (see page 472). 


Students of our revolutionary history are fortunate in having three new narratives 
in small compass. Channing, History of the United States, vol. Ill (191 2), is in a 
very fair spirit and gives economic matters more than ordinary attention ; Avery, 
History of the United States and its People, vol. VI (1909), is chiefly a military 
narrative and its maps are particularly useful; Van Tyne, The American Revo- 
lution (1905), is sometimes too brief in military matters, but is very full in civil 
affairs and gives us most important glimpses into internal politics during the revo- 
lution. Of the older x\merican historians Bancroft and Hildreth still have charm, 
but they are unpleasantly pro-American. Fiske, The American Revolution, 2 vols. 
(1891), though inaccurate in some details is still the most readable book on the 
subject. On the English side the most reliable treatment is in Lecky, History 
of England in the Eighteenth Century (1878-1890), republished as The American 
Revolution, edited by Professor Woodburn (1898). It is generally impartial, 
but does not deal with the political progress of the United States during the war. 
\ larger work is G. O. Trevelyan, The American Revolution, 4 vols. (1899-1912), 
written from the standpoint of the English opponents of George III and generally 
in sympathy with the Americans. It is an able work and is very readable. Fisher, 
Struggle for American Independence, 2 vols. (1908), is readable and informing. 


The published sources are numerous, but the most important are as follows : 
B. F. Stevens, Facsimiles of Manuscripts in European Archives Relating to America, 
25 vols. (1889-1898) ; Force, American Archives, 4th series, 6 vols., 5th series, 
3 vols. (1837-1853) ; Journals of the Continental Congress, new edition by W. C. 
Ford and Gailliard Hunt, 21 vols. (1904-), issued by the library of congress; 
The Secret Journals of Congress, 4 vols. (1821), valuable for diplomatic history; 
Wharton, The Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence, 6 vols. (1889) ; and Moore, 
Diary of the Revolution (1863), a reprint of newspaper clippings. On the British 
side see: Calendar of the Journals of the House of Lords (1810) and the Journals 
of the House of Commons, 127 vols. (1547-1872); the Parliamentary Register 
(i 774-1 779), The Annual Register for the years concerned; and Almon, Remem- 
brancer, 17 vols. (1775-1784). 

An interesting and valuable source of information is the correspondence of the 
leading men of the day, as : John Adams, Works, 10 vols. (1856) ; John and Abigail 
Adams, Familiar Letters during the Revolution (1875) ; Dickinson, Writings, 3 vols. 
(1895); Jefferson, Writings, 11 vols. (1892-1900), Paine, Political Writings, 

2 vols. (1870) ; and Franklin, Complete Works, 10 vols. (1887-1889). Add to these : 
Wells, Life of Samuel Adams, 3 vols. (1865) ; Henry, Life of Patrick Henry, 3 vols. 
(1891) ; and McRee, Life of James Iredell, 2 vols. (1857-1858). Special mention 
should be made of Tyler, Literary History of the American Revolution, 2 vols. 
(1897), a study of the pamphlets of the period. See also R. H. Lee, Letters (Ed. 
Ballagh, 191 1-). 

Much has been written on the military events of the revolution, and the student 
who desires a full bibliography is referred to Van Tyne, The American Revolution 
(1905), chap. XVni. The important general works on the American side are: 
Greene, The Revolutionary War (191 1), an excellent summary; Carrington, 
Battles of the American Revolution, 2 vols. (1876) ; Lossing, Ficld-Book of the Revo- 
lution (1855) ; Dawson, Battles of the United States, 2 vols. (1858) ; Lodge, Story 
of the Revolution, 2 vols. (1898) ; Maclay, History of the United States Navy, 3 vols, 
(new edition, 1898-1901) ; and Mahan, The Influence of Sea Power upon History 
(1890), chaps. 9-14. On the British side see: Fortescue, History of the British 
Army, 6 vols. (1899-), vol. IH deals with our revolution. See also the Public 
Papers of George Clinton, 6 vols. (1899-1902). 

On the Saratoga Campaign see : Stone, The Campaign of . . . B urgoyne (iSyy) ; 
Ibid., Life of Joseph Brant — Thayendanega, 2 vols. (1838, 1865); Lossing, Life 
of General Philip Schuyler, 2 vols, (new ed. 1884); Hadden, Journal Kept Upon 
Burgoyne's Campaign (1884); and Riedesel, Memoirs (trans. 1868), by the wife 
of a Hessian general who served under Burgoyne. The defeated British general 
was severely criticized in a Brief Examination of the Northern Expedition in America 
in 1777, etc., which appeared in London in 1 779. In the following year he pubUshed 
his defense in A State of the Expedition from Canada. His most partial champion 
is Fonblanque, whose Political and Military Episodes (1876) contains many docu- 

On the war in the South see : McCrady, South Carolina in the Revolution, 2 vols. 
(1901-1902); Henry Lee, Memoirs of the War (1896); Garden, Anecdotes of the 
Revolution (1822); Gibbes, Documentary History of the Revolution (1853-1857); 
Tarleton, The Campaigns of 1780-1781 in the Southern Provinces (1787) ; Moultrie, 
Memoirs of the American Revolution (1802); Drayton, Memoirs of the Revolution 
to 1776 (1821); Schenck, North Carolina, 1780-1781 (1889); Connor, Life of 
Cornelius Harnet (1909) ; Draper, King's Mountain and Its Heroes (1881) ; Johnston, 
The Yorktown Campaign (1881); Stevens, Campaign in Virginia, 178 1, 2 vols. 
(1888), reprint of phamphlets in the Clinton-Cornwallis Controversy; Rochambeau, 
Memoirs Relative to the War of Independence (trans. 1838) ; and Lafayette, Memoirs, 

3 vols. (1837). 

On relations with France the best books are : Doniol, Historic de la Partici- 
pation de la France a l' Etablissement des Iitats-Unis d' Amerique 5 vols. (1886- 
1900) ; Wharton, Revolutionary Diplomatic Correspondence, 6 vols. (1889) ; Tower, 


Lafayette in Ihe American Revolulion, 2 vols. (1895); De Lomemi, Beaumarchais 
atid His Times (trans. 1857 and 1895); Hale, Franklin in France, 2 vols. (1887- 
1888); Jay, Life of John Jay, 2 vols. (1833); The Correspondence of John Jay, 
ed. by Johnston (1830) ; The Deane Papers, 5 vols. (N. Y. Hist. Soc. Collections, 
1886-1890) ; The Lee Papers, 4 vols, (same series, 1871-1874) ; , and Letters of 
William Lee, ed. by W. C. Ford, 3 vols. (1892). 

For Independent Reading 

John and Abigail Adams, Familiar Letters during the Revolution (1875); Frie- 
derike Charlotte Riedesel, Letters and Journals Relating to the War of the American 
Revolution (1867), by the wife of a Hessian general whc accompanied Burgoyne 
and who wrote intimately of army life and of the country; Roosevelt, Winning 
of the West, 4 vols. (1889-1896) ; Thwaites, Life of Daniel Boone (1904) ; Woodrow 
Wilson, Life of Washington (1897) ; Withers, Chronicles of Border Warfare (new ed. 
189s); Fiske, TIte American Revolulion, 2 vols. (1891). 



Financial Embarrassments 

The first years of independence were naturally full of difficulties. 
An immense debt, state and continental, must be provided for, trade, 
interrupted by the war, must be reestablished, the vast 
Hooes^*'^ tracts of western land must be developed, society must be 
readjusted on a purely American basis, the bitterness felt 
by the patriotic party for the tories must be allowed to cool, remnants 
of local jealousies must be dealt with, and the feeling for union, so 
weak that the Articles of Confederation were but "a rope of sand," 
must be strengthened and formed into a central government which 
could command respect at home and abroad. Many persons felt 
that these embarrassments could not be surmounted. They thought 
chaos would ensue, and after that would come some violent reorganiza- 
tion which would result in two or more states under some kind of 
European protection. They did not understand the practical 
quality of the Americans, who, through many years, had boldly solved 
new and formidable problems, and who, under the lead of men like 
Washington, Hamilton, Madison, John Adams, and James Wilson, 
discovered a way to bring the people to accept an efificient form of 
central government, under which financial, industrial, and social 
difficulties disappeared. The years 1781-1787 were full of these 
perplexities : the three years following saw them passing away through 
the efforts of the people. 

The expenses of the revolution were met by taxation, loans, and 
issues of paper money. Congress could not lay taxes, but made req- 
uisitions on the states, receiving from this uncertain 
The Rev- source half a million dollars a year. From foreign loans 
Debt"^'^^ $7,830,517 w^as received during the war, and so great was 
the distress that of this sum $1,663,992 was used to pay 
the interest on the domestic debt. The foreign loans were derived 
as follows: from France $5,352,500, from Holland $1,304,000, and 
from Spain $174,017. During the next six years over $2,000,000 was 
borrowed abroad, most of it to pay the interest on the foreign debt. 
Nevertheless, in 1790 we still owed $1,640,071 foreign interest. The 
domestic continental loans of the war amounted to $28,353,832, and 
as the interest on these was not paid after March i, 1782, there was 
in 1790 an arrearage of this kind of interest amounting to $13,030,168. 


The state debts in behalf of the war were very large. Some states 
were paying their portions as fast as they could, others were doing 
little or nothing in that way. No suggestion of assumption had yet 
been made. After the enactment of Hamilton's assumption scheme 
in 1790 the national government assumed these debts to the amount 
of $18,271,787. The condition of the debt was a blot on the country's 
honor and plainly indicated that the tax-laying power of congress 
ought to be strengthened. 

The first issues of continental paper money were moderate, and for 
a year the bills passed at par, but as larger quantities were emitted 
they depreciated rapidly. In two years their value as 
compared with specie was three to one, by September i, ^^^^^^^^ 
1779, it was thirty-eight to one, and in March, 1780, fifty 
to one, nearly $200,000,000 being then in circulation. Depreciation 
continued until the ratio was one hundred to one. In March, 1780, 
congress called in the currency at forty to one, to be paid in taxes 
and destroyed. It also provided for a "new tenor" issue at forty to 
one, bearing interest at 5 per cent. About $120,000,000 was thus paid 
in and canceled. After 1790 the government redeemed $6,000,000 
more at one hundred to one, and the rest was lost to the holders. The 
continental currency became an object of popular contempt, and in 
1 78 1 a facetious fellow of Philadelphia plastered his dog with dollar 
bills and led him through the streets to the amusement of the on- 
lookers. The states also issued paper money, about $200,000,000 in 
all. It depreciated alarmingly, and much of it was not redeemed. 
This large amount of unredeemed money, continental and state, was 
a forced contribution from the people who held it, and involved a great 
sacrifice on their part for the cause of independence. 

The wretched state of the finances brought congress to the verge of 
conflict with the army, which in the last winter of the war remained in 
camp at Newburg, on the Hudson, watching the British 
force in New York while the negotiators in Paris com- jn^he^Armv 
pleted their task. The pay of the soldiers was badly in 
arrears, and they began to fear that if they went home without it 
they would lose it entirely. Some of the officers inflamed their sus- 
picions, and in January, 1783, an address in their behalf was presented 
to congress. It contained a veiled threat of misfortune if redress was 
not granted. Congress could do nothing more than promise a month's 
pay, and the discontent increased. 

All this did not occur without arousing keen interest elsewhere. 
Gouverneur Morris, assistant superintendent of finance and an ex- 
treme advocate of stronger government, declared that 
good must come out of the convulsion he thought im- Results* 
minent. Hamilton, also hoping for a stronger govern- 
ment, but more practical as a public man, hoped that Washington 
would take control of the movement and through it force the country 

224 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1783-1787 

to strengthen the hands of congress. He wrote cautiously to Wash- 
ington to that effect ; but all his calculations were lost. Washington 
was not supple-minded, like Hamilton. He was a man of simple 
loyalty, and he considered the threats of armed interference disloyal 
and dishonorable. 

It cannot be said that men like Hamilton and Morris encouraged the 
dissatisfaction of the army, but the holders of the continental bonds 
were not so guiltless. This class was strong in Pennsyl- 
Speculato^s ^^"i^,, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hamp- 
shire, former trading states where capital was thrown out 
of employment during the war. Agricultural states, lacking a market 
for their products, were in no position to invest in bonds, but were 
more likely to sell what they already had. Thus by 1783 the specu- 
lators had bought up the certificates of debt, and the representatives 
from the commercial states favored a strong financial policy, while 
the delegates from the agricultural states were not so urgent in the 
matter. Then the impression got abroad in the army that the capital- 
ists in Philadelphia sympathized with the soldiers and would help 
them force the delinquent states to their duty. Early in March an 
agent of the speculators arrived at Newburg and was closeted with 
General Gates, second in command to Washington. On the tenth an 
address was secretly circulated, urging the men not to disband until 
they were paid, and warning them against any man who would counsel 
otherwise. At the same time a meeting of the higher officers was 
called for the eleventh. 

Washington discovered the plot a few hours before the officers were 
to meet and acted with characteristic decision. He published at once 
a general order decrying meetings secretly called and 
Washing- openly appointing a meeting for the fifteenth. Gates 
was checkmated, abandoned his own meeting, but hoped 
to control the one just called, where as senior officer he would preside. 
No one thought the commander-in-chief would attend, but the de- 
liberations had hardly begun on the fifteenth when he entered and 
took the floor to speak. Ordinarily of a quiet manner he was now 
agitated and greatly in earnest. He denounced the arguments of 
the secret address, assured his hearers that the best exertions in their 
behalf would be made, and left the room with the confidence of all 
but the chief plotters, many of his hearers being in tears. Resolutions 
were then offered full of patriotic utterances and expressing abhor- 
rence of the recent secret circular. Gates, in the chair, put the ques- 
tion and had the humiliation to announce it was carried unanimously. 
Thenceforth the army was loyal. June 2 it was* disbanded, and the 
soldiers went quietly home, their accounts unsettled, and, as Washington 
said, "without a farthing of money in their pockets." 

One incident only marred the dispersal. A body of raw recruits 
were at Lancaster, Pennsylvania, their pay also in arrears. When 


they heard the Newburg army was going home without pay they be- 
came mutinous, and eighty of them marched to Philadelphia, vowing 
they would have their rights. They were joined by some 
veterans, and marched through the streets, drinking, threat- pi^g^t^^^ '" 
ening, but attempting no actual violence. Congress 
applied to the Pennsylvania executive, a Council of State, for protec- 
tion, but they replied that they dare not call out the militia lest they 
join the mutineers. Then congress adjourned, and after three days 
fled to Princeton. Philadelphia declared the flight unnecessary and 
thought it was instigated by delegates who wished to deprive the city 
of the honor of being the capital of the confederation. 

The financial distress of the day suggested a grant of taxing power 
to the central government. In 17S1 the states were called upon to 
amend the articles of confederation to allow congress to 
collect an import duty of five per cent. All consented but Two at- 
Rhode Island, whose refusal defeated the proposition, tempts to 
Her very smallness made her jealous of the loss of author- ^^^^^ °^~ 
ity, and her large dependence on commerce made her un- Taxing 
willing to surrender a part of what was her surest source of Power, 
revenue. Virginia, who assented at first, withdrew her 
approval on reflection. The prospect of mutiny in the army led 
congress to take up the question again in 1783. This time imposts 
were to be laid for twenty-five years on specified articles, the proceeds 
to go to paying interest on the debt ; and the plan was to be adopted 
if all the states consented. Now was seen how much more the states 
clung to their power with the disappearance of danger from England. 
Virginia and North Carolina accepted without hesitation, but other 
states held back. Impost and no-impost became slogans for two 
classes, merchants, owners of the public bonds, and those liberals who 
foresaw the advantages of union constituting one class, and the great 
body of farmers, shopkeepers, and illiberal persons who believed con- 
centration would lead to despotism constituting the other. Interest 
and theory were combined on each side. After three years' debate, 
Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, New Jersey, South 
Carolina, and Pennsylvania had granted the impost, and Delaware 
was willing if all the other states granted it. New York, Rhode Is- 
land, Maryland, and Georgia held out, or granted it on such condi- 
tions that the benefit was slight. The failure of this second attempt 
to give the central government authority to collect taxes made a deep 
impression on the people, before whom a proposition for a revision of 
the articles of confederation was already submitted. 

Industry and Trade after the War 

Although the war greatly reduced exports of grain, tobacco, fish, 
lumber, and rum, and cut off the importation of a hundred useful 
Q • 

226 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1783-1787 

articles, it did not produce absolute distress. Food and the simpler 
articles of manufacture could be had in abundance ; and while men 

fought for liberty they would forego finery. They were 
Conditions generally used to hardships and could bear them lightly 

when they would. When independence was won it would 
be time enough to think of making money. 

But peace brought unexpected difi&culties. The British ports were 
closed to us now as to other foreigners, unless we paid high duties. 

Continental ports were open, but England was the great 
EneianT manufacturing country of the world : it was her implements, 

cloths, and other merchandise we were accustomed to use, 
and how could we buy them unless we sent her our products ? Have 
them we would, £3,700,000 worth in 1784, and as we sent to England 
only £750,000 worth in that year there was a mighty draining of specie 
to settle the balance. At the same time England laid a high duty on 
whale oil, a blow at our whalers, and the trade with the British West 
Indies, so lucrative before the war, was now forbidden by the naviga- 
tion laws, in order to protect the British merchants and shipowners. 
Some men of the day resented the idea that we must trade with Eng- 
land. Was not France our friend and her ports open? But every 
merchant knew it was not possible to build up trade with France. 
We were bred on British commerce, and our taste would not change 
quickly. So while trade with the continent and in the Orient grad- 
ually reestablished itself, it did not fill the want. 

It was, of course, England's interest to keep our trade, but it was 
hard to make her realize it. She seemed to think we could not choose 

but trade with her. Then retaliation was thought of. 
Att^t^d*^ ^ -^^^ ^^ °"^ dreamed that thirteen states could act effec- 
tively against England. It was a task for the central 
authority, and in 1784 congress asked the states to grant for fifteen 
years the right to pass a navigation law. As England had shown no 
willingness to make a commercial treaty, the power was also asked 
to exclude from our ports certain goods, the property of citizens of a 
nation not in treaty with us. The New England states were earnest 
for the measure, the Middle States supported it without enthusiasm, 
but the South suspected that it would lead to an advantage for the 
trading class at the expense of the farmers. So many restrictions were 
placed by the states on the exercise of the power that their votes 
granting it were futile. 

Then diplomacy was tried. John Adams, in Paris, was appointed 
minister to England, with instructions to make a commercial treaty 

and secure the execution of the treaty of 1783. He ar- 
to^L^don"* ^^^^"^ ""^ London in May, 1785, and was received with 

marks of good will by the king ; but the negotiation pro- 
ceeded slowly. England understood her advantage. She commanded 
the situation and knew it. Why should she give up her ancient 


system to please America ? Adams replied : " Because it is England's 
interest to cherish her trade with America, and if a hard policy is 
adopted America will trade elsewhere or build her own factories." 
The British merchants flouted the idea : America, they thought, 
could not establish manufactures, or trade elsewhere. After eight 
months of parley in which no progress was made, an answer came to 
Adams's propositions. America, it said, had obstructed the payment 
of British debts, contrary to the treaty of ])eace, and no concessions 
would be made, since we did not keep our agreements. Although 
Adams remained in London until 1788, he could get no further com- 
fort. He was deeply humiliated, and advised that we should not 
succeed as long as we collected 10 per cent duty at Boston and 
paid as high as 50 per cent at Liverpool. He seemed not to 
realize that high duties at home would increase the prices of im- 
ported merchandise, lay an extra burden on our own people, and 
only injure England by lessening through high prices the amount 
of goods we imported from her. Nor was stronger government, as 
we now know, a sure cure for the situation, else why did we not re- 
taliate after the adoption of the constitution ? The only remedy was 
to manufacture our own goods, and it was not until thirty years later, 
after an eight-year period of isolation had intervened (see page 
311) that we were able to begin to depend on ourselves in this 

The confiscation of British debts was a serious grievance. These 
were obligations of Americans to British merchants incurred before 
war began. The English commissioners for making the 
treaty insisted that they should be collected, and it was J^^u^~ 
agreed that congress should recommend the states to 
place no obstacle in the way of such procedure. England was also 
anxious that the tories should be allowed to live in peace in the states. 
But the people were bent on confiscating the debts. England had 
made it impossible for the Americans to pay them by establishing a 
blockade and sometimes seizing the goods for which the debts were 
contracted before they reached the American harbors. As for the 
tories, they were much hated because they sided with the enemy in 
the war, and because in some states they took part in civil strife 
which destroyed much property and life. As trade concessions were 
not made and as the Western posts were not given up or the fugitive 
slaves restored, Americans took no steps to pay the debts or lessen the 
hardship of the tories ; and the question remained a source of irrita- 
tion for many years. Meanwhile, the tories moved away to Canada, 
where the mother country gave them land and aid in planting them- 
selves, and the debtors largely evaded obligations by becoming bank- 
rupt and moving to the frontier, where they were lost sight of, and so 
escaped suit for recovery of the obligations. 

The need of a sound currency turned men's minds to bank notes. 

228 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1783-1787 

Several states had established such institutions on moderate scales, 
but they did not answer the requirements of business or give the 
central government the facility it required in lending money in 

emergencies. This, it was thought, could be furnished 
Banis *° better by a great national bank, patterned after the Bank 

of England. Hamilton suggested such a scheme to Robert 
Morris, superintendent of finance from 1781 to 1784. Morris prob- 
ably had already formed such a plan in his own mind. At any rate, 
he got congress to charter the Bank of North America in 1781, with 
a capital of $400,000 paid in specie. It was enlarged to $2,000,000 in 
1784. It had many difficulties, but managed to weather them all, 
and its notes were received at par. As doubt was cast upon its legality 
by repeated assertions that congress had no power to incorporate a 
bank, it secured a Pennsylvania charter in 1782, which though re- 
pealed in 1785 was renewed in 1787. When the old congress ceased 
with the establishment of the new government in 1789, the bank con- 
tinued under the state charter. It did not receive recognition under 
the new regime, but its existence was uninterrupted, and in 1864 it 
became a national bank under the acts then recently passed by con- 
gress. In the dark period of 1782-1789 it did good service by lending 
money to the government at times when no other resource was ap- 
parent. Its first president, Thomas Willing, was an old business 
partner and friend of Robert Morris, and gave him steady support in 
the many arduous efforts by which the latter, as superintendent of 
finance, supported the struggling congress. 

Forming a New Society 

The men of the revolution hated nothing more than monarchy and 
aristocracy. They realized that every step they took was likely to 

be a precedent, and were exceedingly suspicious lest some 
Ar"^'t° la ^^ ^^^ dreaded forms should get recognized. Posterity 

now thinks their fears were unnecessary. Probably not 
even Washington could have made himself king of a people so fiercely 
attached to their self-government. As for an aristocracy, which de- 
pends on permanent forms of hereditary wealth and rank, it is not 
possible that people who had so little of such forms could have toler- 
ated their introduction. Primogeniture, which existed in colonial 
days in New York and the Southern colonies, and the assignment of 
double share to the eldest son in other colonies, were now done away 
with. Entails were abolished, and with them went manorial privi- 
leges, which had survived in New York and Maryland. The rights 
of the proprietors in Pennsylvania and Maryland were seized by the 
state, pvayment to the Penn family being made in the former, but none 
to the Calverts in the latter. But unequal suffrage was retained in 
one way or another in every state. In some only taxpayers could 


vote, in others only the possessors of property. Manhood suffrage 
came at a much later day. 

Jealousy of rank flared up hotly when officers of the continental 
army seemed about to be elevated into a superior class. These officers, 
whose influence did much to induce the privates to enlist, jj^jf p^y 
were promised half pay for life with the advent of peace, for the 
The war was not over before a cry arose against executing Officers in 
the pledge. It would, said the objectors, create an aris- *^® Army, 
tocracy of the most dangerous kind, an aristocracy on a military basis. 
States passed resolutions, and so much excitement was manifested 
that congress commuted the obligation to a payment of five years' 
full pay in cash. Even this caused great indignation. Everywhere 
the people raged against a standing army, the greatest enemy to liberty. 
When it was disbanded in 1783, it was reduced to eighty men, enough 
to guard the arsenals at West Point and Pittsburg. Nor could con- 
gress be induced to create a stronger establishment. Motion after 
motion was rejected to raise a continental force to protect the fron- 
tier. The best that could be done was to recommend the states to 
raise 700 men for this purpose for one year. In 1788 the total strength 
of the army thus raised was 666 men and officers. 

The popular dislike of a military aristocracy came to fever pitch 
when it was known that the officers before disbanding had formed the 
Society of Cincinnati. Its threefold object was to per- 
petuate the friendships formed in the war, to deliberate ^-^^^^^^ 
in secret on the welfare of the country, and to create an 
order membership in which should be an honor to pass to the eldest 
son to the end of time. It adopted an eagle and a blue ribbon as its 
badge, established state and central organizations, and arranged for 
regular meetings. The second and third objects of the order aroused 
most opposition. The mass of the people resented the idea that a 
group of any men, least of all military men, should secretly direct 
public opinion on political matters, and they wanted no hereditary 
aristocracy however formed. They acknowleged the services of those 
who fought for liberty, but felt the merits would be greater if such men 
took their places with other patriots in future efforts for good govern- 

The opposition to the order was not confined to the unthinking 
people. Franklin, Samuel Adams, and John Adams were among 
those who raised a warning voice. They but did in a 
dignified way what a thousand less important men did tig"""*^'*' 
hysterically. Denunciatory pamphlets were written by 
the ton. The society became an issue in the campaigns, and candi- 
dates pledged themselves against it in order to get votes. Legis- 
latures disfranchised the members of the order, and the citizens of 
Cambridge, Massachusetts, petitioned that it be suppressed. Before 
such a tempest of invective the Cincinnati could not stand. Mem- 

230 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1 783-1787 

bers who had political ambition renounced their allegiance, and others 
lost interest in a scheme which was so great a source of commotion. 
For a time the meetings were suspended, but in later years they were 
revived, and the society now exists as a patriotic order. 

The men of 1785 should not be measured by modern standards. 
Descended from the middle and lower classes of England, they had 

often had occasion to reflect on the disadvantages of a heredi- 
Ideal °^'^ *^^y aristocracy. It was the English landed gentry that 

made up the party in support of the king's prerogative. 
The gentry had monopolized offices in state, church, and colonies, and 
the aristocracy had furnished a barrier across which American farmers 
could never expect to pass. The mass of the colonists, even the 
wealthy ones, were descended from those who had felt the burdens of 
an aristocracy. Opposition to such a form of society was inherent. 
Twenty years of struggle, political and military, had developed their 
passions and confirmed their hatred of the words "king," "nobility," 
and "privilege." They controlled opinion among their neighbors 
and determined the actions of state legislatures. They were the 
average men who were going to build the life of the nation. 

Nor did their imaginations rise to the ideal of a great American 
nation. They were bom into a struggle between crown and colony. 

Their first political ideas were to defend the colony against 
thJstates monarchical control. For them patriotism, political 

liberty, and self-government began with the defense of the 
colony. In 1776 they gave up with reluctance as much of state au- 
thority as would enable the states to act together for the continental 
cause. When the war was over, they did not cast off their opinions 
easily. The states acting together had won independence, and with 
the restoration of normal conditions could they not solve the simpler 
problems of peace ? And if it should be necessary to strengthen the 
general government, they felt it ought to be done with the greatest 
care, reserving to the states, which they loved better than any great 
coming nation, all power not absolutely essential to future existence. 
The state, they felt, was the protector of individual rights, which were 
more important than the impression we made on the world as an 
American nation. Much inconvenience was endured before their 
hold on the popular mind was lessened and a stronger working plan of 
union adopted. 

Their attitude toward the tories was equally characteristic. They 
thought it was for the state to regulate the life of its inhabitants. It 

was for the state to decide what penalties should be im- 
wardTories P^^ed on persons who had aided the enemy in time of war, 

and who had carried the torch and sword into communities 
struggling for their dearest rights. If the states had lost, who could 
doubt what punishments would have been visited on the whigs? 
Those who took the sword should perish by it. Was it not, therefore, 


a mercy to spare the miscreants their lives ? and was it not wise to 
insure a homogeneous society in the future by driving away those 
who had supported the king's tyranny and still believed a monarchy 
the best form of government ? 

The lot of the loyalists was indeed hard, especially in New York. 
This city was in British hands throughout the war. Its merchants 
were largely loyal, and to it came for refuge king's true 
subjects from many towns in New England and the Middle Hardships 
states. While the war lasted, they bore themselves Tories. 
haughtily toward the whigs of the city, driving them away 
to New Jersey or Pennsylvania to escape insults and discriminations, 
and seizing their property when they were gone. Now the tables were 
turned. The outcasts returned to the city, hot for revenge. With 
great difficulty conflicts were averted when the two classes met on the 
streets. The legislature disfranchised all who would not swear they 
had not aided the enemy. In 1784 it passed a trespass act, giving 
the patriots the right to recover damages from tories who had occupied 
the houses of fugitive whigs. Many suits at once began, and the 
damages claimed were usually exaggerated. One of the first cases 
tried was that of a widow, Mrs. Rutgers, against Waddington. Alex- 
ander Hamilton, twenty-seven years old, was the counsel for the 
defendant, and argued so brilliantly that the court decided that the 
trespass act was contrary to law. Then followed an outburst of in- 
dignation. Meetings were held, pamphlets appeared, and. the press 
teemed with threats for the tories who dared to remain in the city. 
North and South Carolina had suffered during the war from bitter 
internal strife, and here the feeling against the tories was exceedingly 
strong. Every state had driven loyalists into exile by law or by irritat- 
ing practices which made their remaining unendurable ; and the 
bitterness of the time yielded slowly to milder feelings. Spite of the 
efforts of the British government in their behalf and the interference 
of many liberal-minded whigs, the lot of the tories continued very un- 
comfortable. They were deprived of the franchise, their property 
could not be recovered in the state courts, and large numbers of them, 
estimated at 60,000, definitely abandoned their homes and settled 
elsewhere in the British dominions. Those who left the Northern 
states went chiefly to New Brunswick and Canada ; those from the 
South went to Florida and the Bahamas. Great Britain felt obliged 
to succor them, and by 1790 had given them as much as $16,000,000, 
besides large tracts of land. The exclusion of the tories, largely of the 
upper class, strengthened the democracy of the day. 

The Western Lands 

Seven of the states had claims to Western lands, founded on the 
terms of their colonial charters. They were Massachusetts, Connecti- 

232 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1783-1787 

cut, New York, Virginia, North and South Carolina, and Georgia. 
The other states looked with jealousy at the prospect of being swamped 
by these mighty neighbors when the lands should be well settled ; 
and Maryland flatly refused to accept the articles of confederation 
unless these claims were relinquished. Promises to that effect were 
made before she finally signed, March i, 1781. By 1786 all the claims 
to the Northwest were ceded to Congress with the understanding 
that when the vast Western region was settled, it should be divided into 
states and admitted into the union. Land from colonial times was 
the most popular form of property, speculations in it the foundation 
of many fortunes, and to the people of the day the possession of these 
immense Western tracts added greatly to the national resources, made 
the payment of the debt seem more probable, and promoted the union 
of the states. 

Jefferson, then a member of congress, was deeply interested in these 
lands, and was chairman of a committee appointed to prepare a scheme 

for settling them. The report, spoken of as the Ordinance 
"Northwest ^f 1784, provided for a number of states, fourteen or six- 
of 1784." teen, north and south of the Ohio. Nine were marked 

out north of the river, and names were selected for them. 
One was to be "Washington," another "Saratoga," while others were 
given names of classical origin, as "Metropotamia" ("Mother of 
Rivers"), for the plain where several rivers rise, and "Sylvania," for 
the forest region west and south of Lake Superior. The report also 
provided a system of laws to be enforced until the states were admitted 
to the union. Its most important provision was the exclusion of 
slavery from the Western lands after 1800. Jefferson hoped earnestly 
that it might be adopted, but the Carolinas and Georgia thought they 
would by this means be excluded from a share in the settlement of the 
lands they ceded, and the provision was stricken from the report, 
which was then adopted by congress. The scheme was too complete 
for the Western conditions. The backwoodsmen who were already 
settling in Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee needed a simpler govern- 
ment, and this was embodied in a second ordinance which ignored 
what had been done in 1784. 

In 1787 a newly organized Ohio Company, composed of Massachu- 
setts men, asked congress to sell them one million and a half acres of 
. land on the Muskingum river for $1,000,000, to be paid 
Comnanv ^^^ ^^ ^^^ bonds of the government, then worth less than 

50 per cent of par. The application was urged by Manas- 
seh Cutler, who proved himself a good lobbyist. He encountered much 
opposition from members of congress, who thought the price too low. 
Finally he joined with his scheme another purchase, in which the leading 
members took part, of 3,000,000 acres at the same price ; and on that 
basis the two schemes were enacted. It was proposed to establish 
the colony at once, and by spring, 1788, an advance party of 47 began 


to build the town of Marietta, the first settlement in what was to be 
the state of Ohio. 

Just before the grant passed congress, that body hurried through the 
Northwest Ordinance of 1787, establishing a government for the 
territory northwest of the Ohio. It provided that the 
region north of the river should have a governor, secretary, ^^*^°f ^ 
and three judges appointed by congress ; that when the Ordinance, 
population reached 5000 free men of full age, they should 
have an assembly of governor, council, and elected house of represen- 
tatives. Not less than three nor more than five states might be made 
out of the region, and when any territory had a population of 60,000 
it might be admitted into the union with equal status with the older 
states. The Ordinance of 1787 became the model for all the other 
territories and states carved out of the western domain. It contained 
a bill of rights, one feature of which was that slavery should not be 
tolerated in the Northwest. The South, which opposed the exclusion 
of slavery from the Ordinance of 1784, because it applied to all the 
West, made no objection to its elimination from the region north of the 

In 1785 congress adopted a scheme for the sale of western lands, 
and it was applied to the lands of the Ohio Company. It ordered 
that the territory should be laid out in townships six miles 
square, or thirty-six sections in a township. Each six- j. g . ~ 
teenth section should be reserved for the support of schools, 
and the Ohio Company was required to set aside two townships for a 
university. This township system has been generally followed in 
the West. 

Before this time settlements had already been planted in what later 
became Kentucky and Tennessee. This region was widely known for 
its fertility and abundant game. Hunters went thither, 
and, charmed by the country, built huts, established farms, settlements 
and fought off the Indians, who bitterly resented the in- 
vasion of their best hunting-grounds. The most famous of the ad- 
venturers was Daniel Boone, whose efforts opened Kentucky to the 
world. Leaving his home on the Yadkin, in North Carolina, he went, 
with a small party, to hunt in Kentucky. He loved the country from 
the first glimpse, and though robbed by the Indian, and warned to 
leave under penalty of death, and deserted by most of his companions, 
he roamed and hunted for a year and a half, and then spread such 
glowing ideas of Kentucky among the Yadkin people that in 1773 he 
set out with a band of settlers for the land of his dreams. Halted by 
Lord Dunmore's war he encamped in Tennessee, renewed his efforts 
with the return of peace, opened a road into the upper valleys and on 
to Louisville, where a trading post had long been established, and soon 
saw the country filled with hardy settlers who won their way against 
the dangers of Indian attack and the hard struggle of nature. The 

234 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1783-1787 

settlers were within the bounds of Virginia, but felt its yoke lightly. 
They were sufficient of themselves for the tasks before them. They 
considered the mountains a barrier to permanent connection with the 
states of the East, and looked already to the mouth of the Mississippi, 
the natural outlet of their trade. Wise men talked of the prospect of 
a great valley confederacy which, when strong enough, would sweep 
the Spaniard out of the way and take its place as an intracontinental 

What Boone did for Kentucky, James Robertson, with less of 
romance, did for Tennessee. By 1772 he had come with some hardy 

settlers from North Carolina across the mountains to the 
Folded** fair Watauga valley, east of the Cumberland mountains. 

They fled from the hard rule of Tryon, who was busy 
suppressing the Regulators. When they found they were not in the 
bounds of Virginia, as they first imagined, they set up a government 
of their own, with rules embodied in a written "Watauga Association." 
Many others came to share their lot, and by the outbreak of the revolu- 
tion several valleys were dotted with their peaceful homesteads. 
John Sevier was of their number, and led them with men from Virginia 
and from the upper Yadkin to the victory over Ferguson at King's 
Mountain. When North Carolina began the struggle against the 
king, they organized the District of Washington and recognized the 
state's authority. In 1779 a party from Watauga, led by James 
Robertson, began the settlement of Nashville, on the Cumberland, 
many miles to the westward, and held it, spite of severe attacks by the 
Indians. Thus when congress established the Northwest Ordinance 
in 1787, the first work of colonization had already been done by hardy 
men acting on their own initiative in the regions which were going to 
be the states of Kentucky and Tennessee, but were still under the juris- 
diction of Virginia and North Carolina respectively. 

One picturesque incident in the West remains to be mentioned. 
When North Carolina ceded her western lands in April, 1784, she re- 
served jurisdiction over them until they were accepted by congress. 

News of what was done brought dismay to the people on 
"^f^v " ^i!*** ^^^ Watauga and Holston rivers. They wished to be pro- 
jjq .. " tected from the Indians, and feared a period of nerveless 

government, during which congress would hold them as un- 
protected dependencies. To meet this, protect their land titles, and 
secure the continuity of orderly government, they launched a move- 
ment for a state government. They held meetings of regularly elected 
delegates, adopted a constitution, took the name of the "State of 
Franklin," chose John Sevier their governor, and asked congress to 
recognize them as a state. This happened in the latter part of 1784. 
Just at that time North Carolina revoked her act of cession, sent 
officers to execute her authority in the transmontane region, and 
brought civil war to the very doors of the western people. Congress 


dared not antagonize North Carolina by intervening, and the people 
were unable to defy their eastern masters. At the end of two years 
Sevier's term of office expired, and, as no successor was elected, the 
"State of FrankUn" fell into abeyance. He was then arrested for 
treason and sent across the mountains for trial, but friends interceded 
and he was not prosecuted. The incident shows the desire of the 
western people for self-government and the difficulty of ruling them as 
dependencies of the East. 

Popular Dissatisfaction 

The limitations which most of the states placed on popular govern- 
ment (see page 217) caused dissatisfaction, and struggles soon began 
to remove them. There was universal fear of a strong executive, and 
before the federal constitution was adopted, Massachusetts and New 
Hampshire, become a little more democratic, decided to have gov- 
ernors chosen by the people, and in 1790 and in 1792 Delaware and 
Pennsylvania did the same. In all the states but Georgia the judges 
were elected by the assembly or appointed by the governors. In 
most of the states it was as if the constitution-makers had erased the 
word "king" in the old charters and written the word "assembly" in 
its place. Yet this was a long step toward popular government ; for 
the assembly represented the will of the responsible people. 

This predominance of the conservative classes was not received 
quietly in all the states. It gave too much power, it was thought, to 
men of property ; and parties began to divide between 
the rich and the poor. The latter, suffering from the ^q^I„ ^g. 
scarcity of money, desired to issue paper currency and manded. 
urged the assemblies to pass laws to that end. The for- 
mer thought of the effect on trade and opposed the demand. 
Connecticut, Massachusetts, Delaware Maryland, and Virginia re- 
sisted the cry. They all had conservative classes who were able to 
keep control of the situation. The victory was hard won in most of 
them, especially in New Hampshire, where a mob crying out for paper 
surrounded the meetinghouse at Exeter in which the legislators were 
assembled in 1786, threatening their lives if the demand was refused. 
They were dispersed by the militia, and their cause failed, probably 
because it was identified with mob rule. In the other states, seven 
in all, paper money was issued. 

In Rhode Island the agitation led to serious trouble. The mer- 
chants opposed the proposition, but the country people carried it 
through the legislature. Then the merchants tried to avoid 
the law. They closed their shops and refused to take the '^^®," ^^°^ 
new currency. They were denounced as enemies of the J^^^^^ 
people, and when John Weeden, a butcher, refused in 1786 island, 
to sell meat for scrip, he was haled into court. He was 
ably defended by Varnum, who urged that the state law violated the 

236 THE FIRST YEARS OF PEACE, 1783- 1787 

constitution and was null. The judges sustained his contention and 
dismissed the case. This angered the legislature : they summoned 
the judges into their presence and delivered a reproof; and in the 
next election all but one member of the court were rejected. But the 
decision held, and after a time quiet was restored to the community. 
One of the certificates issued by the paper-money party began with 
the words, " Know ye," and the party came to be known as the "Know 
ye" party. They were ignorant people with real need, but they did 
not deserve all the contempt visited upon them. 

The farmers of western and central Massachusetts were strong 
for paper. They were in debt, and many suits were entered against 
, them in the courts. They hated the lawyers who prose- 

beUloV ^' c^ted the claims and the rich men in Boston, whose 
influence predominated in the legislature. They found a 
leader in Daniel Shays, whose fervent appeals stirred them to a frenzy 
of rebellion. At Northampton and Worcester they broke up the courts 
in order to defer the trial of the cases against them, and elsewhere 
they held the quiet people in terror. Finally they besieged the town 
of Springfield, and seemed to have the whole western region on their 
side. Governor Bowdoin assembled an army of 4400 men under 
General Lincoln and sent it against them in the winter of 1 786-1 787. 
Shays fled as Lincoln approached Springfield, but was pursued and 
defeated at Petersham, on February 3, 1787. His men dispersed 
and he was captured. Resistance was at an end, but the feeling for 
the insurgents was so strong that he was not punished, and Governor 
Bowdoin was defeated at the next election by John Hancock, who 
as Professor McLaughlin says, "loved nothing better than sunning 
himself in the smiles of the crowd." Shays's Rebellion alarmed many 
a sober friend of government in every state. It seemed that the foun- 
dation of government was breaking up, and that the often predicted 
chaos was at hand. 


For general works see : Channing, History of the United States, 3 vols, published, 
1905-1912; McMaster, History of the People of the Uftited States, 7 vols. (1883-); 
Ba.ncToit, History of the United States, 6 vols. (1883-1885), the sixth volume was 
formerly published as The History of the Constitution; Hildreth, History of the 
United States, 6 vols. (1849-1852) ; Schouler, The United States under the Constitu- 
tion, 6 vols. (1880-1894) ; von Hoist, Constitutional and Political History of the 
United States, 8 vols, (trans. 1876-1892) ; McLaughlin, Confederation and the Con- 
stitution (1905), valuable and modern; Fiske, Critical Period of American History 
(1888), the most readable treatment of the subject; Curtis, Constitutional History 
of the United States, 2 vols, (i 889-1 896) ; Avery, The United States and its People, 
7 vols. (1904-). 

On financial matters see : Dewey, Financial History of the United States (1903) ; 
Sumner, Financiers and Finances of the Revolution, 2 vols. (1891) ; Bullock, Finances 
of the United States, lyy^-iySg, (Univ. of Wisconsin Bulletins, 1905) ; Phillips, 
Paper Currency of the American Revolution, 2 vols, (i 865-1 866) ; and Oberholtzer, 
Life of Robert Morris (1903). 


On trade relations sec: Wharton, Diplomatic Correspondence, 6 vols. (1889); 
Macpherson, Annals of Commerce, 4 vols. (1805) ; Pitkin, Stalistical View of Com- 
merce (1816) ; and Coxe, Viciv of the United Stales (1794). 

On the West see : Hinsdale, The Old Northwest (ed. 1899) ; Winsor, The Westward 
Movement (1897) ; Barrett, Evolution of Ike Ordinance of lySy (Univ. of Nebraska 
Papers, 1891) ; Roosevelt, Winning of the West, 4 vols. (1889-1896); Adams, 
Maryland's Influence on Land Cessions (Johns Hopkins Studies, 1885) ; King, Ohio, 
First Fruits of the Ordinance of ijSy (ed. 1903) ; Life, Journals, and Correspondence 
of Rev. Manasseh Cutler, 2 vols. (1888) ; Sato, History of the Land Question (Johns 
Hopkins Studies, 1886); Garrett and Goodpasture, History of Tennessee (1900); 
Pickett, History of Alabama, 2 vols. (ed. 1900) ; and Turner, Western Slate-Making 
in the Revolutionary Era {Amer. Hist. Review, VIII, 1902-1903). 

For Independent Reading 

Chastellux, Travels in North America, iy8o-ij82, 2 vols. (ed. 1828); Stiles, 
Literary Diary, 3 vols. (Dexter, ed., 1901) ; Brissot de Warville, New Travels in the 
United States, 2 vols. (1794); Roosevelt, Wi?ining of the West, 4 vols. (1889-1896). 


The Articles of Confederation 

June 12, 1776, the continental congress appointed a committee to 
prepare a plan under which the states could act together in the future. 

Two schemes came before this committee. One was 
Articles of suggested by Franklin in 1775, and provided for a congress 
tion^^'^^'^*' "^'^^^ representation based on population. The other was 
Adopted. prepared by John Dickinson, of Delaware, and provided 

for equal representation of states. Here appeared the 
deep jealousy of the small states for the large ones. The latter clung 
tenaciously to their opinion, but yielded for expediency's sake. Every 
state was needed in the struggle then beginning, and the smallest was 
in a position to win concessions if it only stood firm. The committee 
reported July 12, but the matter was deferred, after a short discussion, 
until it could be considered by the states. It came up again in the 
autumn of 1777, the delegates having had ample time to learn the 
state of opinion at their homes. Again the large states tried to change 
the will of the small, and again they failed. A confederation of 
equal states was better than no confederation at all. The articles 

passed November 17, but they were not to be binding 
Smlu'^States ^^^^^ approved by all the states. They were a compromise 

in which the least progressive side won. As congress 
said in submitting them for ratification, it was a difiicult and dehcate 
task to combine "the various sentiments and interests of a continent 
divided into so many sovereign and independent communities." 

The articles of confederation were designed to give the central 
government no more power than it needed to carry on national affairs, 
and they reserved all others to the state. Congress was to conduct 
foreign affairs, to declare war, to provide for admiralty courts, to 
regulate the coinage, to establish standards of weight and measure, 
to have sole jurisdiction over Indian tribes, but not to infringe the 
rights of any state in this respect, to estabHsh and regulate post 
offices and post roads, to build and equip a navy, to issue letters of 
marque and reprisal, to have an army made up of troops furnished 
by the states at the call of congress, to appoint the higher army 
officers, to borrow money, and to emit bills of credit. Most of these 
rights had formerly been exercised by the crown, and they were now 



readily granted to the general government. None of them could 
have been exercised easily by the states individually. 

Some powers were expressly reserved to the states ; as raising the 
militia, appointing regimental officers in the army, granting letters 
of marque in time of war, repelling invasion without 
waiting for the consent of congress, and keeping an army t^Tstates. 
or navy in time of peace if congress consented. Other 
important powers were not mentioned, and by implication were 
reserved to the states ; as, to control commerce and navigation, to 
levy imposts, and to lay direct taxes. Nine states must consent to 
the most important acts of congress, and an amendment of the articles 
must be unanimous. Ordinary votes in congress would pass by having 
the approval of a majority of the states, but an adjournment could 
be ordered by congress if the majority of the delegates present con- 
sented. Congress could not levy or collect a tax on 
individuals, but must get its revenues by making requi- 
sitions on the states apportioned on the value of land in private 
hands ; and the state was to collect the amount required as it saw 
fit. Thus, the basis of power was the state and not the citizen. 

The revolution was a protest against the strong executive in England, 
and care was now taken to give the new government the weakest 
possible executive. Congress might appoint a president 
from their own members to have office for only one year ^j^^ 
in three. He had no veto or appointing power, but 
received foreign ministers,. Congress was to appoint high executive 
officers to act under its authority. Thus it appointed a secretary 
for foreign affairs, who reported to congress. A "committee of the 
states," one delegate from each of the thirteen, was to carry out the 
directions of congress in a recess of that body. 

Another weakness was the absence of a federal judiciary. No 
such courts were provided. Cases arising under the articles would 
be referred to the state courts, which would naturally ^ „ . 
lean toward the states. Admiralty courts, however, counts. ^ 
should be established by congress with jurisdiction over 
piracy and over offenses on the high seas, and there was a court of 
appeals for prize cases. A dispute between states was to be referred 
to congress, who should appoint seven or nine arbiters, no two from 
the same state, who were to pass on the dispute and report their 
verdict to congress ; but there was no way of enforcing the decision, 
if the contending states did not choose to obey it. The articles 
declared in the beginning that "Each state retains its sovereignty, 
freedom, and independence," and described the government now 
created as "a firm league of friendship," but near the end they say, 
"and the Union shall be perpetual." In view of the narrow power 
given to the congress, we may conclude that the word "Union" 
here was understood to be a mere act of association. The historical 


significance of the articles of confederation is not to be overlooked. 
They were a step in the development of the union. Weak as they 
were for the purposes demanded of them, they were a conscious 
sacrifice of some of the powers of the hitherto disunited states, and 
their very impotence pointed out in what respect they ought to be 

Moving toward a Stronger Union 

The weakness of the articles surprised nobody. Even the men 
who opposed a strong union were not surprised. They had resisted 

concentration because they feared the power of a strong 
Opposition central government over the states. The four years 
Receding. ^f turmoil following the victory at Yorktown showed them 

that there was something worse than a vigorous congress. 
They saw in the financial chaos the obstruction of trade, and in the 
tendency of states to fall on one another the probability that even 
the small amount of union already established would be lost. If 
such a state of affairs continued, it was likely that each state would 
look out for itself. In such a condition the large states would fare 
best, and small states would either fall into the hands of their great 
neighbors or have to place themselves under the protection of foreign 
powers. It was, therefore, the interest of small states to give up some 
of their reserved powers, provided they could effect an arrangement by 
which they could preserve their integrity as states. 

Meanwhile, the strong union men did not cease to try to develop 
public opinion. Chief among them was Washington, who wrote 

letters to his friends and to legislatures. Hamilton, 
UmonMen ^j^^^ exerted himself, and Madison, who was coming 

into great influence in Virginia, was another who lost no 
opportunity to help the cause. After the fashion of the day, many 
pamphlets appeared on the question, one of the most important 
being by Pelatiah Webster, suggesting so many features of the con- 
stitution later adopted that his admirers have called him the father 
of the constitution. Congress itself took up the work, and passed 
several sets of resolutions looking to a stronger government. Few 
of these advocates desired a unified government : most of them 
looked to a federal government, with power to collect its revenues 
and to make itself obeyed. Some men said that all that should be 
done was to add to the central authority the least possible vigor the 
situation demanded. All these efforts made ready for the work 
of 1787. 

As the discussion went on, the idea of amending the articles in a 
convention continually came up. It was plain that the method in 
the articles themselves was futile ; for one state would probably be 
found to oppose anything suggested. But a convention would not 
be bound by the existing agreement, it would build the union anew, 


and if an agreed number of states accepted its work, the union 
might go forward without the consent of the others. Besides, to 
take part in it would commit no state, and if it should 
be held it would be the interest of each state to be repre- Constitu- 
sented, lest the plan prepared should infringe her interests, '^^f ^°^' 
As the suggestion of such a step was repeated it gained Suggested, 
ground in the popular mind. Many of the discouraged 
friends of central government thought it worth trying, and the friends 
of the states were willing to attend and discuss the points at issue, 
although they were quite sure they would not yield one iota of their 
cause more than was necessary to preserve the fruits of the revolution. 
In all this congress took little active part. It could hardly be expected 
to do a thing that would destroy its own life. 

While opinion thus ripened, events happened which led to the- 
convention. In 1784 Madison learned that much confusion in navi- 
gation and some smuggling existed on the Potomac 
because of different customs regulations on the opposite Yi'^^^l*^ ^"^ 
sides. He undertook to remedy the matter, and got the confer, 
two states concerned to appoint commissioners to prepare 
a code of rules. They met in 1785, had no trouble to agree on the 
matter in hand, but saw that if Maryland changed her regulations, 
her northern neighbors must do the same, or the same difficulty 
would exist on the northern border. This would necessitate changes 
on the northern borders of Pennsylvania and Delaware. In other 
words, the regulation of navigation was a question common to all 
of the states, and the commissioners ended by suggesting a general 
convention for that puq:)ose. Madison, one of the commissioners, 
was a member of the Virginia legislature, where he worked hard to 
strengthen the hands of congress. A strong party opposed his efforts, 
because of their devotion to the sovereignty of the states. Spite 
of their plans, he got the assembly to call on all the other states to 
send delegates to a convention to consider commercial regulations. 
The place was to be Annapolis, remote from New York, where congress 
then sat, and far away from any large port whose merchants might 
influence its deliberations. The time of meeting was to be September 
II, 1786. This convention, be it remembered, was to be a creature 
of the states, to report to them, and was not concerned with the 
continental congress. 

At the appointed time delegates assembled from Virginia, Penn- 
sylvania, Delaware, New York, and New Jersey ; and Massachu- 
setts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and North Carolina named 
delegates who did not attend. The other states, Georgia, 
South Carolina, Maryland, and Connecticut, took no '^^^q^^^^' 
notice of the call. More discouraging than these absences yention. 
was the fact that no real good could be accomplished 
unless a power existed strong enough to enforce common regula- 


tions, if they were made. The convention, therefore, gave up the 
task before it and issued an address to the states urging them to call 
a constitutional convention to meet in Philadelphia the second Monday 
in May. Its action was to be binding when approved by congress 
and confirmed by all the state legislatures. 

This was a bold step. Congress was only half pleased, and took 
no notice of a call coming from a source outside of itself. But Virginia 

was of another inind. Spite of her recent opposition to 
Delegates amendments, she now indorsed the convention without 
deipWaCon- <i6bate and elected delegates, among them Washington, 
vention. Madison, Patrick Henry, and Governor Randolph, 

but Henry refused to serve. Other states followed her 
lead, and congress unbent enough to call a convention at the same time 
and place, but without allusion to the work at Annapolis. Rhode 
Island alone refused to take action, although New Hampshire hesi- 
tated until June, and her representatives took no part in the earlier 
deliberations at Philadelphia. The quick response of the other states 
was in strong contrast with their opposition to amendments. Though 
disgusted with congress, they were loyal to the American cause and 
hoped with a new trial to make a better form of government than they 
then had. For this puqaose they put forward their best men. The 
American congress had not contained, since the first days of its exist- 
ence, such men as gathered at Philadelphia ; Benjamin Franklin, 
James Wilson, Gouverneur Morris, Alexander Hamilton, Rufus 
King, William Patterson, Oliver Ellsworth, Charles, and Charles 
Cotesworth, Pinckney, and Luther Martin. Though divided in their 
opinions, they were among the best leaders of the day, and no superior 
men could have been found for the task before them. 

Washington was chosen president of the convention, and the 
meetings were held in the strictest secrecy. At the close the journal 

was delivered to him sealed with instructions to hand 
Meeting of ^^ ^^gj. ^^ ^^le congress of the United States, if the consti- 
vention. tution now prepared was adopted. In 1818 congress 

ordered its publication, but it was the merest skeleton 
of the proceedings. A fuller record was made by Madison, the best 
versed member in political science, and such an earnest supporter 
of the practical measures of the convention that he came to be called 
''the father of the constitution." At the first session he took a seat 
from which he could hear all that was said and made as full a record 

of the debates as he could. His "Notes" were first 
" Notes'"^ published in 1841, and constitute our best information 

of what was done. Other members, particularly Yates, 
of New York, made notes less explicit, and these also have been 

The opposition between large and small states came up with the 
meeting of the delegates. Four days after the convention organized 


Governor Randolph, of Virginia, offered a tentative plan of union. 
It favored the large states and provided for a congress of two branches, 
the lower elected by the people on the basis of population ... 

or land values and the upper elected by the lower pj^ irgima 
branch. The significance will be seen if we remember 
that by the first census, 1790, Virginia had a population of 747,610, 
Massachusetts, including Maine, had 475,327, Pennsylvania had 
434,373, North Carolina had 393,751, and New York had 340,120. 
The combined population of Rhode Island, Delaware, New Jersey, 
and New Hampshire was only 453,943. The combined population 
of the five largest states was 2,391,181, and that of the other eight 
states was 1,334,238. Georgia, with a population of 82,548, had 
vast undeveloped areas and usually acted with the large 
states, so that these six great states had 66. i per cent, of the ^"^'^ °° °' 
entire population, and since the other states had restricted states, 
boundaries, the progress of settlement could be expected 
to increase their advantage. If land values were taken for the basis 
of representation, the distribution of power would be nearly the same 
as if population were taken. 

The congress thus delivered over to the large states should have 
authority to make all the laws the existing confederation could make, 
as well as to veto a state law in conflict with the consti- 
tution, and to coerce a state failing in its duty. There Congress 
was to be, also, a national executive chosen by congress, yh-einia^ 
but its composition was not defined. There was to be a pian. 
council of re\dsion, of which the executive was to be a part, 
with power to veto a law of congress or a congressional veto of a state 
law ; but its veto might be overridden by a subsequent session of con- 
gress. There was to be a national judiciary selected by congress 
with jurisdiction over admiralty cases, issues in which foreigners or 
citizens of different states were parties, impeachments of national 
officers, and cases concerning the collection of the national revenues. 
It was also provided that officers of the states should be required to 
take oaths to support the constitution of the union, and that the con- 
stitution when completed should be submitted to the people of the 
states for approval through their legislatures or conventions chosen 
for the purpose. This plan, which was largely the work of Madison, 
was distinctly popular in its character. It was supported because 
a popular basis of government favored the large states, and it had the 
opposition of the small states for the same reason. Pinckney, of 
South Carolina, submitted a plan, much like Virginia's, but the 
convention took little notice of it. Alexander Hamilton also had a 
plan as strongly central as Virginia's, but he did not submit it to 
the convention. 

The debates began in the committee of the whole. The Virginia 
plan had the solid support of the large states, except New York, 


which, under the influence of George Clinton, thought to hold out 
for special terms. Six of the eleven states represented, — Massa- 
chusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South 
cesses of'the ^^^^^^^^y ^^^ Georgia, — over-riding the arguments of 
Large States ^^^ small states, carried the main features of that plan 
through the committee. They were in no mood to com- 
promise. If the small states would not federate on the proposed 
plan, said Wilson, the most masterful of its defenders, let them know 
that the large states would federate on no other. And the small states, 
not prepared for such a spirited assault, could only repeat their 
assertion that they would not put their heads into the hon's mouth. 
Their leader was Paterson, of New Jersey, as determined a man as 
Wilson himself. He thought it better to remain out of the union than 
to accept the domination of the victors ; and one need only look 
at the map to see that a group of states around New York harbor, 
from Connecticut to Delaware, could have laid the foundation for 
a great independent federation if they had thrown in their fortunes 
in a common cause. 

When the committee reported to the convention, Paterson, there- 
fore, offered the ultimatum of the small states, itself a plan of govern- 
ment. He was willing to strengthen the hands of congress, 
Pkn^^°°^ to allow it to lay and collect import duties, to regulate 
trade, and to coerce a state which did not pay its requisi- 
tions. He would even grant a national judiciary with large powers, 
but he would not agree to distribute power according to population, 
and he demanded equal representation of the states in congress. 
Had the minds of the delegates been free from passion they would 
have seen that even this was a great improvement over the articles 
of confederation: it would have remedied most of the abuses under 
the old system. But the question was now beyond the mere fact 
of remedying abuses ; it was : Should a nation be founded on a popu- 
lar basis or on a state basis ? and around that fundamental point 
began a discussion whose acrimony made every cautious and patriotic 
delegate tremble for the issue. After five days the vote was taken. 
Maryland was divided, and Connecticut, in sympathy with the small 
states but not willing to defeat union, voted against the ultimatum. 
Thus the large states again won, the vote being seven to three against 
Paterson's plan, and the convention took up the report of the com- 
mittee of the whole. 

June 29, came the first division on the make-up of 
Fight over congress. It was voted to have proportional represen- 
mTof^Con- tation in the lower house, Maryland being divided and 
gress. New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Delaware voting 

in the negative. It was a critical moment. If the same 
combination carried the vote on the composition of the upper house, 
the small states, if they fulfilled their threats, would abandon the 


convention. Wilson was inexorable. " If the minority of the people 
of America," said he, "refuse to coalesce with the majority on just 
and proper principles, if a separation must take place, it could never 
happen on better grounds." To which a Delaware delegate replied: 
"The large states dare not dissolve the Confederation. If they do, 
the small ones will find some foreign ally of more honor and good 
faith, who will take them by the hand and do them justice." 

Fortunately, there were some moderate men in the convention who 
thought a compromise better than disruption. Several times in the 
debates small-state delegates had suggested that at least 
the upper house should be based on equal representation Ellsworth's 
of states, and no notice had been taken. But at this q^^^ ^'^ 
critical point the idea recurred to the small-state men, and promise. 
Ellsworth, of Connecticut, pleaded eloquently for it as 
a guarantee to the small states that they should not be swamped 
by the influence of their large neighbors. It seemed a small concession 
in order to preserve the union of all the states. The appeal reached 
one man, Baldwin, of Georgia, Connecticut born and a Yale graduate. 
On the vote being taken, he was for compromise, and 
divided his delegation, thus leaving the large states with Georgia' ° 
only five votes. At the same time Luther Martin's 
colleague was absent, and he cast Maryland's vote for the resolution. 
The vote in convention was, therefore, five to five, and the power of 
the large states was checked. The pathetic appeal of the small 
states at the last had reached the hearts of some of their adversaries, 
and a committee of one from each state was appointed to arrive at 
a compromise. Franklin was a member, and suggested the report 
that the lower house be based on representation and have the right 
to initiate revenue laws, and that the states have equal voice in the 
upper house. After eleven days of bitter debate, with many futile 
motions to amend, the report was carried, North Carolina voting for 
the compromise. Four large states held out, Pennsyl- 
vania, Virginia, South Carolina, and Georgia, while Massa- Adoo^ed""^^ 
chusetts was divided. They took defeat badly, and asked 
for an adjournment to consider what they should do. Everybody 
left the hall in the deepest gloom. The event had come which the 
larger states had said would justify withdrawal : would they carry 
out the threat ? Early next morning they held a meeting to decide 
upon their course. Some were for withdrawal, but the majority were 
for remaining. They were not willing to give up the last hope of 
a united government. Thus the compromise was allowed to stand 
and constitution-making was resumed. 

The compromise had vast influence on the future. It broke at a 
vital point into the scheme of a national government on a popular 
basis. It divided the lawmaking power between two dissimilar 
and, in some cases, opposing sources of authority. If the large states, 


four of whom were Southern, had won in 1787, slavery would not have 
found refuge in the senate fifty years later, and the secession move- 
ment might have been dealt with before it was strong 
Its In- _ enough to venture its cause on the field of battle. The 
the Future, equality of the states in the senate nourished the seces- 
sion movement through three decades of its early growth. 
This compromise was soon followed by another. Congress was 
given power to lay direct taxes to be apportioned according to popu- 
lation, and representation was to be based on population. 
Three-fifths Since the slaves did not vote, some Northern men thought 
gj*^® they should not be counted in representation, it being 

Counted. logical to found political power on citizenship. They 
also thought that slaves should be included in appor- 
tioning direct taxes, because they were property, and taxation should 
rest on the ability to pay. The South opposed each proposition. 
Williamson of North Carolina suggested that three-fifths of the slaves 
be counted in representation. There was some sharp debate, showing 
the deep feeling of the North against the advantage slavery gave 
the South and the resentment of the South that it should be a basis 
of discrimination against her. At the end a compromise was adopted, 
three-fifths of the slaves being counted in apportioning both repre- 
sentation and direct taxes. 

Still another adjustment of conflicting interests was to be made. 
The four states south of the Potomac were agricultural, and all the 
others had strong commercial interests. Since the states 
Commerce ^/ere to be equal in the senate, the South, remembering the 
Foreign British navigation acts, feared that the North might com- 

Siave Trade, bine to make discrimination against the non-commercial 
section. They, therefore, hesitated when it was proposed 
to give congress control over commerce. At the same time the regu- 
lation of the slave trade came up. Virginia and Maryland had as 
many slaves as they could profitably employ, and there was no popular 
demand for more. Their leading men saw the evils of the system and 
would have been pleased to eliminate it. They joined with the men 
of the North in a desire to forbid the foreign slave trade at once. 
This alarmed South Carolina and Georgia, where slaves were more 
profitable. The people of these two states looked with hope to the 
settlement of the Gulf region, where rich lands awaited development 
through slave labor. Georgia and South Carolina, therefore, objected 
to an immediate checking of their slave supply and a consequent 
enhancement of slave prices. Here again came a warm debate in 
which the southernmost states resorted to the usual argument that 
they would not federate if their interests were overridden. They had 
the sympathy of North Carolina, and it was evident that a powerful 
state could be formed if the three, with the vast Gulf section, set 
up a government of their own. Finally the spirit of compromise 


prevailed. Congress was given control of navigation, which satisfied 
the North, and it was agreed that the foreign slave trade should not 
be prohibited before 1808. 

Other points of difference appeared in the convention, but they 
concerned the theory of government, and not the interests of the 
parts of the union. They were usually won by the advo- 
cates of a national government. Thus the powers of '^^^ 9°°" 
congress, methods of election, the functions of the execu- completed, 
tive, the creation of a system of federal courts, the powers 
denied to the states, the methods of amending the constitution, and 
other similar points were passed upon after much contention. The 
sessions lasted until September 17. Of the fifty-five delegates who 
had attended, only thirty-nine were present and signed : some of the 
others had gone home in disgust to oppose adoption when the com- 
pleted instrument should appear before the states. Probably few 
of its supporters believed it was all it should be, but they held it was 
better than the old system, and they believed time would show its 
defects and lead to amendments. These, also, went to their homes 
resolved to do what they could to secure adoption. 

The Adoption of the Constitution 

The country waited anxiously while the convention deliberated 
behind closed doors : it was in commotion as soon as the constitution 
was published. As the members returned to their con- 
stituencies full of arguments for nationality, the immediate .J'^^^^ , ^ 

1 . • /-T-11 1 1 i"^ People. 

response was enthusiastic. Ihe people were accustomed 

to follow leaders, and the federalists, as the advocates of nationality, 
had the advantage of early organization. Newspapers teemed with 
articles on both sides, speeches were made, and pamphlets appeared. 
The most notable utterance was a series of papers by Hamilton, 
Madison, and Jay, under the title of "The Federalist," then and to 
this day an excellent summary of the meaning of the constitution. 
On the other hand, some of the most prominent men of the day began 
to denounce ratification. They favored a stronger ' government 
than the old confederation, but they thought the suggested plan too 
national. They slowly rallied their following into a group known as anti- 
federalists, and by speaking and writing urged that the liberty of indi- 
viduals would be destroyed if the powers of the states were reduced. 
In the convention the small states were the champions of state 
rights, but now they were most eager to ratify. They had won their 
fight in regard to the composition of the senate, and made 
haste to " come under the roof," as the phrase ran. Dela- ^^^1^ 
ware ratified first, December 7, 1787, New Jersey on the tjoug^ 
1 8th, and Connecticut on January 9, 1788. The first large 
state to act was Pennsylvania, where the antifederalists appeared in 


strength. They fought so well that a compromise was adopted. The 
federalists agreed to ten suggested amendments which should be 
submitted to congress in the hope that they would be referred to the 
other states for approval ; and on that basis the constitution was 
accepted on December 12. January 2 Georgia ratified unanimously. 
By this means five states accepted the new government within a month 
and two days, and the federalists were much encouraged. 

In Massachusetts the antifederalists were strong in the interior 
towns where distrust of the merchants and capitalists of the seaports, 
now generally federalists, had been marked since the days 
Massachu- ^f ghays's rebellion. All eyes turned to John Hancock and 
Ratifies. Samuel Adams, who had much influence with the popular 
party. They were both known to hesitate, but the former 
was won over by the promise of support for either the presidency or 
vice-presidency in the new government. The latter could not be 
so easily convinced. He was devoted to his state and thought her 
interests were sacrificed. In the convention Hancock was induced 
to offer a number of proposed amendments supporting the rights of 
the states. Adams announced that he was satisfied, and on February 
7 ratification was carried by the relatively small majority of 19. 
The Pennsylvania amendments had been in the nature of a bill of 
rights, and were considered a safeguard of personal liberty : those 
offered by Massachusetts went farther and sought to lessen nationality 
and strengthen the states. Without them it is doubtful 
Significance jf ^-f^g Qj^j gg^y State would have accepted the constitution. 
Amend- '^^^ antifederalists pronounced them a subterfuge and 
ments. asked who was so simple as to believe that attention would 

be paid to amendments once the nationalists got the 
government established to their liking ? and would it not be more 
sensible to announce that they would not ratify until the amendments 
were adopted ? The federalists replied that if the constitution were 
now rejected, there was slight hope that the states could be got to 
consider it again. Their success in urging amendments as a means 
of overcoming the arguments of the Massachusetts antifederalists 
induced them to use it in all the states who later raised strong objec- 
tions. Of the seven states voting after this all but one ratified with 
amendments. The consent of Massachusetts determined New 
Hampshire, who at first adjourned her convention to 
States ^^^ what her great neighbor would do. April 26 Mary- 

land ratified, and South Carolina on May 23. This made 
eight states, and by the constitution the new system was to go into 
effect when nine had ratified. Which would be the one remaining 
necessary accession ? The question was answered when on June 2 1 
New Hampshire accepted the constitution. 

Before the South knew of New Hampshire's action Virginia, after 
a hard and doubtful battle, had decided for union. Although the 


state's delegation voted steadily for nationality in the Philadelphia 
convention, in no ratifying convention was there a harder fight 
against nationality. It was led by Patrick Henry, who . . 
had refused to go to the convention as a delegate. He 
opened the attack in the Richmond convention by boldly proposing 
to call to account the Virginia delegates, Washington included, on 
the ground that they had been untrue to the state when they made a 
plan for a national government. He was supported by George 
Mason, a delegate who refused to sign the constitution, and by R. H. 
Lee, leader of a group of disappointed men who long opposed the 
policy of the great planters in eastern Virginia. They attacked the 
constitution at every possible point. It would make a tyrant of the 
president, it would enslave the states, it would destroy individual 
liberty : these and other arguments were marshaled by the impetuous 
Henry with dramatic force. Madison and John Marshall met his 
arguments coolly. The proposed plan, they said, left the states with 
all necessary powers over local affairs and gave the union only what 
power was needed to direct the affairs common to all the states. At 
the end of three weeks of excited debate amendments were brought 
forward, forty in all. Henry laughed at them. They were designed, 
he said, to lull the fears of the antifederalists, but once adoption was 
secured they would not be heard from again. Madison replied with 
a pledge that they should be fairly considered and submitted to the 
states. The promise was trusted by some members of the convention 
who were in doubt, and ratification was carried on June 25, 1788, 
by a majority of ten. 

Ten states had now "come under the federal roof," and the battle 
shifted to New York, where George Clinton led the antifederalists. 
When the convention met in June a majority of the w y k 
members were with him. Hamilton, Jay, and Robert R. 
Livingston led the federalists with great ability. The same argu- 
ments used in the other states were bandied back and forth ; but 
when it was known that ten states had ratified, the situation changed. 
New York was not willing to be left out of the union in company 
with Rhode Island and North Carolina. Some antifederalists now 
became discouraged, and when the vote was taken, July 26, the 
federalists won by three votes. A resolution was passed asking con- 
gress to call a new convention to consider a constitution. It won some 
votes for ratification, but it elicited no response from either congress 
or the other states. Everywhere men were tired of the discussions 
of the past year and were willing to test what had been won before 
they began to revise it. 

Two states now remained out of the new union. North Carolina 
and Rhode Island. In the former a convention was held, controlled 
by the antifederalists. It was decided to adjourn without action. 
The leaders hoped that other states would do the same and be able 


to force the union to amend the plan adopted. Rhode Island 
submitted the constitution to the people, who rejected it by a 
large majority. After the new government was organ- 
North Caro- i2ed these two states became ashamed that they were 

Du^j'^T without the fold, and accepted the constitution, the 

Rhode Is- . ^^ ' , ^ ^ i i i 

land. former on November 21, 1789, and the latter on 

May 29, 1790. 

Nationality and State Integrity in the Constitution 

There is a trace of nationality in the articles of confederation, 
but the constitution has a great deal more. By it the legislature 
may do the following things: i. Lay and collect taxes, 
Powers o direct and indirect, "to pay the debts, and provide for the 
common defense and general welfare of the United States," 
but taxes must be uniform throughout the union; 2. Regulate 
foreign and interstate commerce; 3. Pass naturalization laws; 
4. Pass uniform bankruptcy laws; 5. Enact copyright and patent 
laws ; 6. Raise and support an army ; 7. Call out the militia to execute 
the laws of the union, suppress insurrection, or repel invasion; 
8. Have exclusive control over the district, not more than ten miles 
square, to be selected for the national capital ; 9. Buy with the consent 
of the state in which they lie sites for forts, arsenals, and other 
public works and buildings, and have exclusive control of the same ; 
10. Make laws to carry into effect any of the powers granted to it 
in the constitution ; 11. Suspend the writ of Habeas corpus when 
necessary in cases of rebellion or of invasion; 12. Determine the 
times and places of choosing presidential electors; 13. Judge of the 
validity of the election of its own members, each house acting for 
itself; 14. Dispose of and govern the territory and other property 
of the United States; and 15. Admit new states into the union, 
but no state to be divided without its own consent. Of the powers 
granted to congress by the articles of confederation the following 
were reaffirmed: i. To establish and control post offices and post 
roads ; 2. To borrow money ; 3. To coin money and fix the standards 
of weights and measures ; 4. To define and punish piracies and 
felonies on the high seas ; 5. To create and maintain a navy ; 
6. To make rules for the regulation of the army; 7. To declare 
war ; and 8. To grant letters of marque. 

The composition of congress is as follows : i. A house of represent- 
atives, composed of not more than one representative for 
of°Congress! ^^^^ 30,000 inhabitants and each member to be chosen 
I. The every two years ; but each state must have at least one 

House of representative. In apportioning representation and direct 
Representa- taxes three-fifths of the slaves and all the whites shall 
**^®^' be counted. Each representative must be at least 


twenty-five years old, seven years a citizen of the United States, 
and a resident of the state from which he is chosen. The 
house of representatives elects its own officers and has sole right 
of impeachment. It originates all bills for raising revenue, but the 
senate may amend them. 

2. The senate, composed of two members from each state chosen 
for six years by the state legislatures, each member to have one vote. 
One-third of the members are chosen every two years. 
Each senator must be at least thirty years old, nine Ignate. 
years a citizen of the United States, and an inhabitant 
of the state from which he is chosen. The vice-president presides 
over the senate but has no vote unless there is a tie. The senate 
tries impeachments, but when the president is impeached the chief 
justice presides, and a two-thirds vote is necessary for all convic- 
tions. It also confirms the appointment of officers nominated by the 
president and by a two-thirds vote ratifies treaties. It chooses 
a president pro tempore to preside when the vice-president is absent 
or fills the office of president. 

Congress shall meet in regular session at least once a year, on the 
first Monday in December, or on some other day selected by itself. 
The state legislatures shall direct the time, place, and 
manner of electing members of each house, but congress 
may, if it Avills, make other regulations for choosing senators and 
representatives. All persons vote for representatives and presidential 
electors who vote for members of the most numerous branch of 
the state legislature. Each house is judge of its own elections, each 
elects its own officers, each prescribes its own rules of procedure, 
and each must enter the yeas and nays in its journal when one-fifth 
of the members present demand it. No member shall 
be called to account for words spoken in debate or arrested -^^^^^ " 
during attendance on the sessions, except for treason, 
felony, or breach of the peace. Each bill to become a law must 
be passed by each house and signed by the president of the United 
States, but if he vetoes it, congress may pass it over his veto by a 
two-thirds majority. If he keeps it ten days without .j.j^ y ^ 
either veto or approval, it becomes law. If he receives 
a law within ten days before adjournment and does not act upon it, 
the bill is not law. Congress may not create a title of nobility, and 
no federal official shall accept a foreign title or present without the 
consent of congress. 

The executive function is exercised by a president of the United 
States chosen for four years by electors appointed by . 

the states as they may see fit. Each state is to have ^^^^ 
as many presidential electors as it has representatives 
and senators, and each elector has one vote. The selection of elec- 
tors may be regulated by congress. The president must be a natural- 


born citizen of the United States, at least thirty-five years old, and 
for fourteen years a resident of the United States, and he shall take 
an oath faithfully to execute the office and to defend the constitution. 
His powers are defined as follows: i. He shall be commander-in- 
chief of the army and navy; 2. He shall make treaties with the 
concurrence of two-thirds of the senate ; 3. He shall 
appoint ambassadors, judges, and other officers with the 
consent of the senate, and, if congress gives him the power, inferior 
offices of his own accord ; 4. He shall call congress in extra session ; 
5. He shall receive ambassadors and conduct negotiations with 
foreign states ; 6. He shall see that the laws be executed ; 7. He 
shall be liable to impeachment for "treason, bribery, or other high 
crimes and misdemeanors"; 8. He shall have the power to pardon 
all offenses but cases of impeachment ; and 9. He shall send to 
congress information on the state of the nation. 

The constitution also creates a vice-president, to serve when the 
president is incapacitated for office and to preside over the senate. 
He is chosen in the same way as the president. Originally 
President ^^^ electors were to vote for two men; and the one having 
the highest vote was to be president and the next to be 
vice-president. The growth of parties showed weakness in this 
feature of the system, and the twelfth amendment, 1804, provided 
that the presidential electors should vote separately for president and 
vice-president, the majority vote electing to each office. If no candi- 
date for president has a majority, the election goes to the house of 
representatives, which, voting by states, shall choose from the three 
highest candidates. 

The president is given power to call on the heads of the executive 
departments for written opinions relative to their respective depart- 
ments. This clause is all the constitution contains 
Cabinet ^" reference to the cabinet. Out of it have grown impor- 

tant functions. It is held that a president may appoint 
or remove the members of his cabinet ; but congress alone may create 
a new department, whose head thus becomes a member of the cabinet. 
In creating a strong executive and a congress with large powers 
of legislation, the constitution added greatly to the nationalism of the 
government. It went still further when it established a 
Courts system of federal courts. It provides that the judicial 

power of the union shall reside in a supreme court and such 
lower courts as congress may establish. The judges are appointed 
as other federal officers and hold office during good behavior. Their 
most important jurisdiction extends to cases arising under the con- 
stitution, laws, and treaties of the United States, cases affecting 
foreign ministers and consuls, admiralty cases, cases in which the 
United States is a party, and controversies between two or more states, 
or between a state and citizens of another state, or between citizens 


of different states, or between a state or its citizens and a foreign 

state. The supreme court has original jurisdiction only in cases 

concerning foreign ministers and consuls and those in which a state 

is a party. In other cases it has appellate jurisdiction. Treason 

against the United States consists of "levying war against 

them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid n^c^°^ 

and comfort"; and conviction of treason shall only 

occur on the evidence given in open court of two witnesses to the 

same overt act, or upon confession in open court. 

The old congress had as much judicial jurisdiction as the articles 
of confederation allowed to the central government. The makers 
of the constitution considered this union of legislative 
and judicial functions unwise, and they took pains to ^.""'■J""^- 
make the executive, legislative, and judicial organs inde- 
pendent of one another, holding that each would check the evil 
tendencies of the other. As a result, great power was given to the 
federal courts. They have become interpreters of the constitution 
and in that capacity have declared null laws of congress, laws of the 
states, and even state constitutions, when there has seemed to them 
to be a conflict with the powers of the general government. Creat- 
ing the federal courts was one of the most powerful expressions of 
nationality adopted by the convention of 1787. 

The constitution provides two methods of amendment: i. Two- 
thirds of each house may approve an amendment, and it becomes 
effective when accepted by three-fourths of the states ; 
2. The legislatures of two-thirds of the states may call ^^^^' 
for a constitutional convention, which congress must 
summon. The product of a constitutional convention becomes 
law when ratified by three-fourths of the states. 

In several general ways the constitution modifies the power of 
a state: i. It guarantees to each a republican form of government 
and to the citizen of one state residing in another all the 
rights of a citizen of that state ; 2. Fugitives from justice l-i^ltations 
and from labor are ordered to be surrendered on the- states 
demand of the state from which they fled. 3. No state 
may emit bills of credit, make anything but gold and silver coin a 
legal tender, or pass a biU of attainder, ex post facto law, or a law impair- 
ing the obligation of a contract; 4. No state may lay imposts or 
duties on imports or exports without the consent of congress ; and 
5. The constitution and laws in pursuance thereof are to be the su- 
preme law of the land. 

Besides these specific limitations we must consider the immense 
national authority and prestige, which was bound to reduce the state's 
pretension to complete sovereignty. But the state felt its inferi- 
ority less because it had not exercised many of the powers now 
relinquished, and because it retained most of the functions vital to 


its own interests. It was still a self-governing community, making 
laws to govern personal and property relations, controlling its 

own plans for social improvement, regulating the police 
Overween- power over its own citizens, choosing its own govern- 
'^^the^^ '^® ment, administering its own laws in its own courts, and 
Nation. doing other things which were not themselves connected 

with the life of the general government. In all things 

properly within its own sphere it was conceded to be supreme. 

In 1789 the bounds between its authority and that of the nation 

were not well defined, and if there should be conflict between the 

two in a matter of interpretation, it seemed probable 
Probable that the stronger would win. Three features of the national 
Conflict. constitution were ominous: i. Congress had power to 
"' lay taxes to provide for the general welfare. If the phrase 
"general welfare" were given a broad interpretation, it was difficult 
to say what congress might not do. 2. The constitution and the 
laws of congress were made supreme law, and the federal courts were 
given power to declare null state constitutions and laws in conflict 
with them. If, therefore, a controversy between a state and the 
nation should come before such a court, it seemed probable that the 
federal supreme court would support the authority of the latter. 
3. Congress was given control over interstate commerce. This 
was not of great apparent importance at the time, but the develop- 
ment of means of communication would increase interstate commerce, 
enlarge the activity of the federal government in supervision of it, 
and produce frequent situations in which a state should be unable 
to regulate commerce within its borders, on the ground that to do 
so would interfere with interstate relations. 


General references are the same as for the preceding chapter. On the consti- 
tution, see the following secondary works : Meigs, Growth of the Constitution in the 
Federal Convention (1900) ; Taylor, Origin and Growth of the American Constitution 
(191 1), gives too much importance to Pelatiah Webster's pamphlet; Story, 
Commentaries on the Constitution, 2 vols. (eds. 1873 ^.nd 189 1); Curtis, Consti- 
tutional History of the United States, 2 vols. (1889-1896) ; Jameson, Studies in the 
History of the Federal Convention (Amer. Hist. Assn. Report, 1902) ; Beard, Read- 
ings in American Govermnent and Politics (1909); Bryce, The American Common- 
wealth, 2 vols. (ed. 1911); Thayer, Ca^e^ on Constitutional Law, 2 vols. (1895); 
Learned, The President's Cabinet (191 2); and Hare, American Constitutional Law, 
2 vols. (1889). 

The original material on the convention has been many times published. The 
best edition is Farrand, Records of the Federal Convention (191 1), 3 vols. It contains 
the journal of the convention and the notes on debate by Madison, Yates, Patterson, 
McHenry, King, Peirce, and Hamilton, each presented day by day. Vol. Ill 
contains in reprint many valuable speeches, letters, etc. The journal and most of 
the notes are in Elliot, Debates, 5 vols. (ed. 1S36) ; also the debates in state ratify- 
ing conventions. Madison's Notes are in several editions, the best being by Hunt, 
vols. Ill and IV, in the Writings of Madison. There are several editions of The 


Federalist, but the best are by P. L. Ford, Lodge, and Dawson. On the author- 
ship of The Federalist, see Bourne and Ford, P. L., in American Historical 
Review, II, 443-460 and 675-687. Original pamphlets are reprinted in Ford, P. L,, 
Essays on the Constitution (1892) and Pamphlets on the Constitution (1888). 
Another comprehensive list of original documents is in The Documentary History 
of the Constitution, 5 vols. (1895-1905). 

Much valuable information is in the writings and biographies of public men of 
the time. Of the former, see Ford, W. C, Washington, 14 vols. (1889-1893) 
Sparks, Washington, 12 vols. (1834-1837) ; Hunt, Madison, 9 vols. (1900-1910) 
Lodge, Hamilton, 9 vols. (1885-1886); Bigelow, /^ra«/fe/m, 10 vols. (1887-1888) 
Adams, C. F., John Adams, 10 vols. (1850-1856) ; Hamilton, Monroe, 7 vols 
(1898-1903) ; and Ford, P. L., Jefferson, 10 vols. ; (1892-1899). The most important 
biographies are: Hunt, Madison (1902); Rives, Madison, 3 vols. (1859-1868); 
Jay, Wm., John Jay, 2 vols. (1833); Rowland, Mason, 2 vols. (1892); Henry, 
W. W., Patrick Henry, 3 vols. (1891) ; Wells, Samuel Adams, 3 vols. (1865) ; 
Still6, Dickinson (1891) ; Austin, Gerry, 2 vols. (1828-1829) ; Lee, R. H. Lee (1825) ; 
and Randall, Jefferson, 3 vols. (1858). 

For Independent Reading 

Elliott, Biographical Story of the Constitution (1910) ; Landon, Constitutional 
History and Government (1889) ; Fiske, Critical Period (1888) ; Morse, Life of Franklin 
(1889) ; Lodge, Alexander Hamilton^{i882) ; and Morse, John Adams (1885). 



The Work of Organization 

July 2, 1788, the president of the old congress, in session in New 
York, rose and announced that nine states having ratified the con- 
stitution, it was in order to take steps to establish the new 
ohfr^*^* government. His hearers agreed with him, and it was 
gress. " resolved that the states should choose presidential elec- 
tors on the first Wednesday in January, 1789, who, a 
month later, should select a president and vice-president ; and that a 
congress elected under the constitution should meet the first Wednes- 
day in March following. After some debate, New York was selected 
for the place of meeting. This was the last important legislation of the 
congress which for fourteen years had guided the fortunes of all the 
states through the dangers of war and the hardly less difficult trials 
(^^ of peace. Would success crown the new system, over whose adoption 

there had been so vast an amount of dispute ? Some wise 

^. "„ ones had serious doubts, and the most hopeful admitted 
penment. . . ' ,, , i i • i 

V , that it was an experiment, but urged that it be given a 

/ « fair trial. 

For president the unanimous choice was Washington. He was a 

good general, though not a brilliant one. He was not a good speaker 

^•^: and was not versed in the principles of government. But 

Washington }^g ^^s honest, fair-minded, dignified, and faithful to the 

President liberty of America. He had the power of commanding 

,- ^ ' obedience, and everybody, federalist and antifederalist, 

^i; trusted him. With Washington at the helm, faction would be 

checked and the authority of the union respected. His personal 

character was worth a great deal to the ''experiment." It gave 

i- it the confidence of Americans and foreigners. John Adams was 

'^ elected vice-president. 

At the time designated very few members of congress were in New 
York. The weak-hearted thought this was because nobody cared 
for the new plan, but others showed that it was because 
Me^s^^ the roads were bad. April 6, the senate had a quorum, 
the electoral votes were counted, and a messenger went 
to summon the president-elect to the seat of government. April 
30, he was in the city and took the oath of office. On his journey to 
New York he received every mark of affection from the people. 



The problems before president and congress were numerous. All 
that the old confederation could not do had now to be taken up. In 
the first place, the government was to be organized. The officers 
of state, great and small, must be appointed; federal 
courts, high and low, must be created ; a revenue law must the Dav^^° 
be devised ; the revolutionary debt must be placed on a 
sound basis ; commerce must be regulated ; those parts of the treaty of 
1783 v.hich were not executed must be carried into effect ; our relations 
with foreign states must be defined in proper treaties ; a site for the 
federal capital must be selected ; and many other minor affairs must 
have attention. They were tasks which demanded the wisdom of the 
best men in the country, and they engaged the attention of Washing- 
ton and congress through most of his two administrations. Men 
approached them mth the greater caution, because they felt that all 
that was done would be taken for precedents in the conduct of the 
affairs of the future. 

The first thing was to raise a revenue. Madison, a member of the 
house of representatives — generally called "the house" — intro- 
duced the subject by moving an import duty of 5 per cent 
on all articles brought into the country. A Pennsylvania Revenue 
delegate objected. He wished a small tax for revenue, 
but asked that it be laid so as to protect articles produced in America. 
The Middle states were then the chief center of American manufac- 
tures. After much discussion, the protective principle was adopted, 
but it was for a long time made incidental to the purpose of getting a 

Then congress took up the task of creating great administrative 
departments. In July it created a department of state, in August, a 
department of war, and in September, a department of 
the treasury. Over each was to be a head of department, J^^^^^'^i"" 
who should ever be nominated by the chief executive and partments. " 
confirmed by the senate. Over the first the president ap- 
pointed Thomas Jefferson, of Virginia, who had just come back from 
Paris, where he had been our minister since 1785. Over the second 
he placed Alexander Hamilton, of New York, then, as later, known 
for one of the best-informed Americans in questions of finance, a 
man of fine mind, versed in principles of government, and a leading 
politician. Over the third he placed Henry Knox, of Massachusetts, 
a man of no great ability, but popular because he was a revolutionary 
general and had influence in New England. Congress also created 
the office of attorney-general, to which Edmund Randolph, of Vir- 
ginia, was appointed. He was merely law adviser to the administra- 
tion, had a small salary, and was expected to have outside practice 
if he wished it. The first three heads of department were brought 
together to advise the president about problems of administration, 
and this was the beginning of the cabinet. It was not until 1870 that 


the department of justice was formally organized with the attorney- 
general at the head, but he attended cabinet meetings from the first. 
Although the laws creating the departments said nothing about the 
right of removing the heads, it was generally held that it lay with the 
president, and on this theory later practice has proceeded. It would 
be unwise to force the president to keep in his cabinet a man who is 
uncongenial, or who does not have his confidence. 

Next came the judiciary. No one objected to a supreme court, but 
some thought that the state courts should be given jurisdiction over 
federal cases in the lower stages, with appeal to the higher 
Federal court. This did not please the majority of congress, who 

tablished." wished that the government should have a complete court 
system of its own. It was accordingly decided to create, 
besides the supreme court, with one chief justice and five associate 
justices, four circuit and thirteen district courts, whose judges should 
be appointed by the president and confirmed by the senate. The 
number of these lower courts has been increased with the growth of the 

Another duty was to deal with the amendments sent up by the 
ratifying states. Henry and other prominent antifederalists had 
pronounced the plan of ratifying with suggestions of amend- 
The Amend- j^-,gj^(^g g^ subterfuge ; and for a time it seemed that they 
were right. Weeks passed and congress took no notice 
of amendments. Then the complaints at home became so loud that 
congress dared not delay longer. The suggested amendments were 
referred to a committee. All that looked toward a modification of the 
plan of union were ignored, and the twelve which congress sent to 
the states for adoption were in the nature of a bill of rights. Ten 
of these were accepted. The antifederalists declared that this con- 
firmed their previous suspicions, and criticized congress roundly. 
But the subject did not interest the people, and the antifederalist 
party soon disintegrated ; for other measures were coming up to divide 
the voters into two great parties. 

The constitution designed that congress should be entirely inde- 
l)endent of the executive. The president could communicate infor- 
mation, but neither he nor his cabinet could speak on the 
Theinitia- floor or vote in its proceedings. Each house was very 
^^^ ^" jealous of interference from that quarter, and he, there- 

ongress. f^^-Q^ jj^g ^q initiative in legislation. This important 
function was referred to committees. To them were sent impor- 
tant bills introduced by members. The most powerful stand- 
ing committee in the house was the committee of ways 
Congres- ^^^ means, created in 1795, whose functions were con- 
mittees. nected with raising and expending revenue. At first the 

committees were special, but in time standing committees 
came into general use. In the first congress the committees of each 


house were elected by the members, but from 1790 to 1911 the 
speaker of the house, who has been a party man since 1791, ap- 
pointed the committees in that branch. The senate committees are 
still elected by the members of the senate. 

Financial Reorganization 

The first session of congress lasted until September 29, 1789. 
One of its last acts was to ask Hamilton, secretary of the treasury, 
to prepare a report on the state of the finances. He 
took up the task with accustomed energy, and the ^ *"^*°'^ ^ 
result was four reports covering every phase of the ^iai Reports, 
matter intrusted to him. The first was submitted 
January 14, 1790, and dealt with the public debt; the second, 
submitted December 13, 1790, recommended an excise; the third, 
December 13, 1790, recommended a national bank ; and the fourth, 
December 5, 1791, argued for the protection of manufactures. The 
fourth report was not considered when introduced, but the others 
were enacted into law. 

The debt was then, including arrears of interest, divided as follows: 
due to foreigners, $11,710,378 ; to domestic creditors, $42,414,085 ; and 
a floating debt of $2,000,000. Hamilton proposed to re- 
fund all this at par. Now, the domestic debt had been ^g^^'lfnti- 
selling as low as 25 per cent of par, and the first suggestion nental Debt, 
of paying at par had led the speculators to buy the old 
certificates wherever found. Should the government enable them to 
make the handsome profits anticipated now became an urgent ques- 
tion in congress. Hamilton claimed that such a course was necessary 
to place the public credit on a sound basis ; others, mostly men from 
rural constituencies, urged that the idea was preposterous. They 
thought he wished to found a party whose center was men of wealth, 
through whose influence persons dependent on them for financial pros- 
perity should be dominated. It was the first appearance in the new 
government of party division. Madison supported the latter view 
and proposed that the debt be paid at par, but that the speculators 
be given only the ruling price and tha^: the rest up to par be paid to the 
original holders of the debt. This plan found favor with some mem- 
bers, but the majority thought it impossible to determine who were 
the original holders, and it was decided to pay the debt as proposed by 

The secretary of the treasury wished also to assume the debt in- 
curred by the states in aid of the revolution. This propo- 
sition aroused still greater opposition. Some states had Assumption 
paid much of their revolutionary debt and objected to Debts. 
assuming a part of that of others, as they must do as a 
part of the union, if the measure carried. But those states which had 


not settled their debts were in favor of the plan. As leader of the former, 
now appeared Madison. In 1787 he had been prominent in the party 
of nationality, but he now argued that the constitution gave congress 
no power to assume state debts. After weeks of discussion the op- 
ponents of assumption had a small majority. But before the vote was 
finally cast, a compromise was effected, chiefly through the efforts of 
Hamilton and Jefferson. The Southerners favored locat- 

A Sout era j ^j^ capital on the Potomac, but lacked a few votes for 
Capital. ,0 ^ ^ , ' 101 

that purpose, it was agreed that enough bouthern votes 

should be got for assumption to carry it, if enough Northern votes 

were secured to get a Southern location of the capital ; and on this 

basis both measures were carried in the spring of 1790. Hamilton 

and the nationalists were pleased, because they thought assumption 

would strengthen the national government and invigorate the national 

credit by removing from the sphere of doubt a large mass of securities 

which the states, in the existing distress, could not hope to pay for 

many years. As it turned out, assumption increased the obUgations 

of the United States by $18,271,786. 

Refunding, as time showed, was a slow process. In 1795 over a 

million dollars of the old debt was still unfunded. Including this 

amount, the total was $77,500,000, of which the foreign debt, 
TheTota $11,710,000, paid interest at 4 per cent, 4I per cent, and 5 

per cent. Of the domestic debt of $65,800,000, about half, 
45.4 per cent, paid interest at 6 per cent, while 30.3 per cent paid at 
3 per cent, and 24.3 per cent was at 6 per cent with interest pay- 
ments deferred until 1801. 

To pay the debt, Hamilton got congress to establish a sinking fund 
which, it was supposed, would eventually absorb the entire indebted- 
ness. He did not fear a national debt, but said it might even become 
a national blessing. His adversaries charged that he wished to make 
it perpetual, like the debt of Great Britain. The majority of the 
people, like thrifty husbandmen, wished to pay it gradually. But 
a national debt, by causing the capitalists who held it to look to the 
government for payment, was a strong bond of union. 

Hamilton considered a great national bank, like that of England, a 
necessity. It would issue large quantities of its notes and thus provide 

a much-needed and safe currency; it would enable the 
First Bank government to sell its bonds quickly at home and abroad ; 
Ui^ted ^^ would furnish a safe and cheap means of exchange for 

States. the people ; by establishing branches in the leading cities, 

it would enable the government to transfer its funds 
cheaply ; and it would furnish a safe place for keeping the public 
funds. His opponents objected that it would give the bank a monop- 
oly in exchange ; that by making its notes receivable for government 
dues, it would have superior privileges ; that it would interfere with 
the operations of state banks ; and that the constitution gave congress 


no power to establish a bank. They stressed the last objection most ; 
and when a bill to create such a bank with a charter for twenty years 
passed congress, efforts were made to have it vetoed. Washington 
hesitated, but finally called on his cabinet for advice. Hamilton 
argued for approval, and Knox supported him. Jefferson took the 
other side and had the support of Randolph. The president at last 
decided for Hamilton, on the ground that he would favor the man in 
whose department, the treasury, the matter lay. The bank began 
business in 1791 and had a capital stock of $10,000,000, of which the 
government owned $2,000,000 for which it was to pay in installments. 
The fact that the government was a large stockholder added to the 
public confidence in the bank. 

The third feature of Hamilton's scheme was an excise, a tax collected 
on distilled liquors. Congress passed the bill to that effect, and Wash- 
ington approved it. Hamilton supported it both because 
it would give a revenue and because, by collecting the tax ^^ ''"^^ 
at the stills, owned chiefly by farmers, the power of the 
general government would be brought home to the people of every part 
of the country. Thus, each feature of Hamilton's scheme stood for 
strong national authority. In opposition to him grew up a party 
opposed to centralization. The federalists, who supported Hamilton, 
embraced the large business interests, capitalists, merchants, and 
manufacturers, together with men who favored a strong 
government generally. The opposition, led by Jefferson, uation^sm 
opposed further concentration and had strong support 
from the farmers in the South and in the rural parts of the Middle 
states. Among them were many former antifederalists ; but the 
name was unpopular, because they no longer opposed the constitution. 
They preferred the name "republican," which gradually came into use. 

Hamilton's financial plans proved very successful. No one could 
doubt that a country with such immense resources as the United 
states could pay its obligations, if it wished ; and the 
enactment of the laws he recommended expressed its ^^^"?!f °f 
purpose in the matter. Accordingly, the bonds sold well, pj^n. 
the bank he established proved successful, and confidence 
in the future was high. Bold imagination characterized every scheme 
he espoused, and in each case he was justified by the result. With 
the enactment of his suggestions vanished all fears that the nation 
would be embarrassed by its debts. 

Adjusting Foreign Relations 

Meanwhile, our foreign relations demanded attention. England 
had not paid for the slaves carried away at the end of the revolution, 
and she still held five frontier posts extending from Lake Champlain 
to the north of Lake Superior, all of which was contrary to the treaty. 


She justified her failure on the ground that we still impeded the col- 
lection of British debts and had not relaxed our regulations against 

the loyalists. These Western posts were centers of a 
The Treaty j-j^,}^ Canadian fur trade, to which our own traders wished 
ecuted' ^° S^^ access, and we justly attributed her action to her 

desire to prolong as much as possible her advantage in that 
respect. Another complaint was that she would not make a com- 
mercial treaty. American traders wished to have her modify her 
navigation laws so as to allow them to share in the trade with the 
West Indies. Washington took early notice of the situation, and in 
1789 sent Gouverneur Morris to London to see if arrangements could 
be made. The British ministry was immovable, and Morris, like 
Adams several years earlier, could think of nothing better than to ad- 
vise that we draw near to France in commercial affairs, — a threat as 
impotent now as formerly ; for France did not manufacture the mer- 
chandise we needed. It was not until the autumn of lygi that the 
first British minister to the new government arrived in Philadelphia, 
the seat of government from 1790 to 1800, but he brought no instruc- 
tions to make a treaty, and the futile negotiations still went on. 

By this time the Indians south of Lake Erie were in a state of fer- 
ment. White settlers were appearing north and west of the Ohio, in 

pursuance of a treaty at Fort Harmar in 1789, which the 
Defea^"^ ^ savages claimed was obtained through fraud. Their 

fears were stimulated by the Canadian traders, who were 
alarmed at the prospect of losing a region rich in furs. Gen- 
eral St. Clair, governor and military commander in Ohio, asked 
congress for troops to reduce the Indians to order. Two thousand 
recruits were sent him, with which he marched from Cincinnati into 
the forest north of it, where, November 4, 1791, he carelessly allowed 
himself to be ambushed by the foe. Of the fourteen hundred men on 
the field, only fifty escaped uninjured, and all the baggage was lost. 
It was the first battle fought under the new government, and the news 
of the disaster caused great distress in the East. Washington himself 
gave St. Clair a severe rebuke and appointed Anthony Wayne, of 

revolutionary fame, to conduct another expedition against 
Command ^^^ Indians. October 7, 1793, Wayne marched with 

2600 men for the enemy's country. He built Fort Green- 
ville there, and went into winter quarters. In June, 1794, he was 
joined by 1600 mounted men from Kentucky and began an advance. 
The war had now taken on a new phase. From the beginning the 

Indians received ammunition and guns from the British, 
British ^^^ Canadian traders and officials gave them open en- 

tions. couragement. Canada thought England would eventually 

retain the Western posts, and wished to preserve the 
Indian tribes intact, both on account of the fur trade and because they 
would thus have a buffer between their own territory and that of the 


United States. In 1793 the hostiles showed a willingness to make 
peace, but continued the war through the persuasion of the British. 
In the following February, Dorchester, governor of Canada, made a 
speech to a number of chiefs, telling them they were wronged by the 
Americans, and that England and the United States would soon be at 
war, when the Indians could recover their lands. At the same time 
British soldiers from Detroit, one of the retained posts, were erecting 
a fort sixty miles south of that place in territory unquestionably 
American. All this was known in Philadelphia, and Washington 
ordered Wayne to carry the intruding fort, if it was in his way. The 
Indian war, therefore, seemed about to become a war against England. 

This eventuality was averted by the rashness of the savages, who 
chose to risk a battle south cI the offending fort. They met Wayne 
in a body of fallen timber and were repulsed in a sharp 
encounter. They fell back, but the fort refused to receive 5^^ '® °^ *® 
them, and they dispersed into the forest. Wayne sent ximber. 
out detachments to destroy their fields and villages, but 
he did not attack the fort. After some time, he received overtures 
from the hostiles and appointed a council to make a permanent peace 
in the summer of 1795. The meeting was at Fort Greenville, where a 
treaty, concluded on August 4, adopted a line from the 
Ohio to Fort Recovery, thence eastward to the Muskingum, '^^^^y °| 
and thence with that river and the Cuyahoga to Lake ^yg^ ' 
Erie ; and the Indians recognized this line as their eastern 
and southern boundary. Thus, most of Ohio was definitely open to 
white ownership and soon became the scene of active settlement. 
The war had the good effect of convincing England, and her more 
confident colonists in Canada, that something must be done to settle 
the dispute about the Western posts ; but it was in another negotiation 
that the affair was adjusted. 

At this time Spain held Louisiana and viewed with alarm the ad- 
vance of the new republic into the transmontane region. In order to 
check it she resorted to three intrigues, two with the ad- 
venturous settlers themselves and one with the south- j^wues 
western Indians. Holding the mouth of the Mississippi, 
the outlet of the Western trade, she had a powerful argument for the 
men of Kentucky and Tennessee. In 1785 Spain sent Gardoqui, an 
able negotiator, to the United States to make a treaty. Three ques- 
tions came up, the navigation of the Mississippi, recognition of the 
secret clause of the treaty of peace of 1783, and commercial relations 
with Spain's American possessions. The men of the seaboard were 
concerned with the last, those of the West thought most of the first 
and second. After much discussion, in which the Spaniard asserted 
that he would never yield on the first and second point. Jay asked 
permission to make a treaty in which we got concessions only in respect 
to the third. The Eastern and Middle states seemed complaisant, 


but those of the South, who had lands on the Mississippi, objected, 
strenuously, and the proposed Jay-Gardoqui treaty of 1786 came to 

But the Western settlers were deeply dissatisfied. They took Jay's 
proposition to mean that the East cared nothing about them. Their 

discontent was stimulated by agents whom the Spanish 
"n the^West governor at New Orleans sent among them. It was his 

hope that the Western communities could be induced to 
revolt and place themselves under Spanish protection. One of his 
paid agents was James Wilkinson, who distributed Spain's gold among 
some Kentucky leaders and organized a party who supported the in- 
trigue. The prospect of getting free navigation of the river served, 
also, as a strong lure to the men of the West. In 1788 the intrigue 
came to a head in Kentucky, the strongest Western community. 
But the forces of order were greater than those of revolt, and the Ken- 
tuckians rejected Wilkinson's appeals and contented themselves by 
asking Virginia to consent to the creation of a new state out of her 
transmontane lands. When the Old Dominion granted this in 1789 
much of the discontent subsided, and a still better feeling was en- 
gendered when Kentucky was made a state in 1792. In 1790 North 

Carolina transferred her Western possessions to the union, 
Stated ^^ ^^^ ^^^y were not admitted as the state of Tennessee until 

1796. In 1 791 Vermont had been received as a state, 
and all this was a pledge that the West should have fair treat- 
ment as it grew in population. In this way Spain failed in her 
scheming to stay the growth of the power of the United States 
on her borders. 

The controversy over the northern boundary of West Florida was 
not so soon settled. The United States stood firmly for the secret 

clause of the treaty, Spain stood against it. She had the 
Boundary advantage of holding Natchez, within the disputed area, 

and an attempt to oust her by force must lead to war, a 
thing for which we were not ready. The president and cabinet 
thought the matter should be deferred without prejudice to our claim ; 
for it could be settled better when our population in that region was 
strong enough to threaten occupation with decisive effect. But about 
this time their plan seemed likely to fail by the intrusion of settle- 
ments in the disputed region itself. In 1789 Georgia, who claimed 

that the lands in the disputed region were within her 
Land^G^ants borders, made grants to three great companies, which 

proposed to plant settlements. One of the companies 
went so far as to open negotiations with the governor of New Orleans, 
promising to recognize the authority of Spain if the settlements were 
not opposed. Such a course must bring us into conflict with Spain 
and Washington promptly issued a proclamation warning the people 
to have nothing to do with it. In consequence, the scheme failed, but 


the claims of the land companies remained as a source of irritation for 
many years afterwards. 

Spain's third intrigue was destined to come to a fate equally futile, 
and for this Washington's diplomacy was also responsible. Between 
Florida and the Tennessee settlements lived the powerful 
Cherokee, Creek, Chickasaw, and Choctaw tribes, inhabit- t^g in^gns 
ing a rich territory and strong enough to muster 10,000 
warriors. They were friendly with the Spaniards, who bought their 
furs and sold them merchandise, and whose trading posts were never 
followed by farming communities. Alexander McGillivray, a rich 
and capable half-breed Creek, a tory in the revolution who had suffered 
at the hands of the whigs and who now hated the Americans, became 
a Spanish agent to preserve Spain's influence with the Indians. A 
treaty made in 17S4 contained an Indian pledge that no white man 
should visit the Creeks without a Spanish permit, and efforts were 
made to get a similar treaty with the three other tribes. About this 
time Indian attacks began to be made upon the growing settlements 
in Tennessee, and it was evident that the officials of Florida encouraged 
the attacks in order to impede settlement in that region. 

Thus was created a situation demanding the intervention of the 
general government. Washington resorted to diplomacy, although 
the men of the frontier thought that war should have been 
the instrument. McGillivray was induced to appear at McGiih- 
New York, where he received $100,000 for the damages pUcity. 
sustained during the revolution and was made a United 
States agent in matters of trade with the rank of brigadier general. 
In return he promised that the Creeks should be at peace with the 
United States. The treaty was immediately broken, and his death in 
1793 did not improve matters. The Tennesseeans grew restless under 
their sufferings and wished to retaliate ; but the government was carry- 
ing on a long-drawn-out negotiation with Spain and 
ordered that the peace should be observed. For a while Vengeance 
the frontiersmen complied, but at last they were goaded to nesseeans. 
action. In 1793 Sevier, with a band of East Tennesseeans, 
and in 1794 Robertson, with a party of West Tennesseeans, made raids 
on the bands of offending Cherokees, burning their villages and killing 
without mercy. From that time the settlements had peace. 

Happily, at this time the negotiations which had gone on haltingly 
at Madrid since 1791 took a favorable turn. France was at war 
with Spain, and Genet, just arrived at Charleston, was or- 
ganizing forces to move, regardless of our neutrality, gpafn^iygs. 
against Florida and New Orleans. Three expeditions 
were proposed, one against Florida and two against Louisiana. 
Spite of Washington's efforts to interfere, preparations went forward 
rapidly, and only Genet's recall averted, it seems, serious trouble of 
this kind. The response of the men of Kentucky, Georgia, and the 


Carolinas showed Spain how much unpopularity her policy was developn 
ing in our back country, and her tone became more conciliatory. 
Washington seized the opportunity to quicken the currents of diplo- 
macy, and the result was a treaty arranged by Thomas Pinckney, 
our minister, with Godoy, a liberal Spaniard, on October 27, 1795. 
It confirmed the secret clause of the treaty of 1783 relative to the 
Florida boundary, gave the Americans the right to use the river, and 
allowed them to deposit in New Orleans products intended for exporta- 
tion. Kentucky and Tennessee thus got easy access to outside markets, 
Georgia acquired a better title to the southern half of her Western lands, 
and the national government closed an annoying dispute with Spain. 

The United States and the European War 

In 1793 France beheaded her king, and almost immediately was at 
war with England and Spain. The year before she had begun a war 

with Austria and Prussia. The South generally was en- 
Amerkans thusiastic in her behalf, as well as the farmers and ordinary 

townsmen of the Middle states. But the trading class 
everywhere, closely dependent on England, felt otherwise, and they 
were supported by the rural New Englanders, who, under the influence 
of the congregational clergy, hated a republic which had enthroned 
a Goddess of Reason. Washington feared that the ardent French 
partisans would, by some rash action, bring on war with England, 
and issued a proclamation of neutrality. Inasmuch as the treaties 
of 1778 (seepage 199) were still in force, the French party took this for 
British partisanship. The proclamation was roundly denounced in 
the newspapers of the newly founded republican party and defended 

in those of the federalists. At this time our politics be- 
Neutrahty came divided in accordance with the division in Europe, 
tion! ^™ ' ^^^ irom this situation they did not emerge until Napoleon 

was definitely defeated and France ceased to be at war 
against the powers around her. 

April 8, 1793, Genet, first minister from the French republic, arrived 
at Charleston. The merchants and great planters received him 

coolly, but the populace were mad with joy. Carried 
Arrival^ away by his reception, he raised troops for operations 

against Spain and commissioned privateers against Eng- 
land. Departing for Philadelphia by land, he was received enthu- 
siastically by the farmers of the Carolinas and Virginia and became 
convinced that the American people were in sympathy with France. 
Washington received him with reserve, and Genet grew angry and in- 
formed his government that the American people did not approve the 
neutrality proclamation. He described the president as a weak old 
man, under British influence. Many of his deeds were as foolish as 
his words. The republicans gave him encouragement at first, and he 


formed the intention of getting congress to force Washington to act in 
behalf of France. Finally, he talked openly about his appeal to the 
people. The federalists attacked him from the beginning, and they 
made so much of his ill-advised attitude toward the administration 
that even the republicans began to forsake him. No calm patriot 
would tolerate an open attempt by a foreigner to influence the internal 
poHcy of the country. 

Washington was rarely moved by popular clamor, and he intended 
to preserve neutrality. The treaties of 1778 provided that the French 
might bring their prizes into our ports and that enemies of 
France might not fit out privateers there. Genet inter- J|J*^p^'^^*^^^ 
preted this to mean that French prizes brought in might Treaties. 
also be sold, and that France might fit out privateers in 
American ports. His view was brought before the cabinet, where 
Hamilton opposed it totally and Jefiferson would allow as much of it 
as would not bring us into war with England. Washington held the 
balance. He would do all the treaties required ; and it was decided 
that France might fit out privateers in our ports but send them away 
at once and not use our ports as a base of operation, or send in and sell 
prizes captured at sea. Genet complied unwillingly. He had already 
licensed fourteen privateers which had taken eighty prizes. 

A month later, July, 1793, it was known that he was fitting out a 
prize. The Little Sarah, with cannon and was about to send her to sea. 
When approached, he became angry and talked of appeal- 
ing to the people ; but when he learned that the ship was ? ^'I^q^ 
about to be seized, he agreed that she would not sail with- fense. 
out notice. Ten days later the promise was violated. 
Washington was outraged. "Is the minister of the French republic," 
he said, "to set the acts of this government at defiance with impunity ?" 
He convened the cabinet, which decided to ask France to recall Genet. 
It also determined to exclude French prizes and privateers in the future. 
The demand caused no dissatisfaction in Paris, where a fresh revolu- 
tion of party had left the luckless Genet in danger of his life. In fact, 
Fauchet, his successor, was instructed to arrest Genet and send him 
home for trial. He owed his safety to Washington, who generously 
refused to allow him to be extradited. He remained in America, mar- 
ried a daughter of Governor Clinton of New York, and died in that state 
at an old age. 

The Whisky Insurrection 

Hamilton's excise law, passed in January, 1791, was very unpopular 
in the western counties of Pennsylvania and the states southward, a 
region through which the Scotch-Irish were widely settled. . 

They brought with them the habit of making whisky out opposed^* 
of grain, and by 1791 their stills on every farm furnished 
so much of the liquor that it superseded the New England rum, which 


in colonial times was the common tipple throughout the colonies. 
The tax was not large, but it was resented because it was inquisitorial. 
The opposition reached actual violence only in Pennsylvania, where 
four counties had been organized in the valley of the Monongahela, all 
lying to the south of Pittsburgh. The people there were near enough 
to the new settlements in the Ohio valley to feel much of that spirit of 
independence which had caused some men to fear a separation of the 
West from the East at no distant day. 

In 1 791 popular meetings began to be held to urge the inhabitants 
to defy the excise law. The leaders were in a violent mood, and threat- 
ened to deal with officers collecting the tax. Albert 
Violence in Gallatin, later to have a distinguished career in national 
vanda.^ politics, lived in the region, attended the meetings, and 

sought to check the trend to violence. His efforts were 
futile ; for the angry farmers listened more willingly to the harangues 
of the men of action. They paid no attention to a proclamation of 
warning which Washington, at Hamilton's suggestion, issued in 1792, 
and continued to hold meetings, threaten the revenue officers, and 
cut up the stills of those who obeyed the objectionable law. In 1794 
fifty warrants were drawn for persons concerned in these outrages 
and made returnable to the federal court in Philadelphia. 

Trouble arose when they were served. A mob surrounded the 
house of Neville, an inspector, to make him give up his commission, 
and six men were wounded and one killed by shots fired 
n Arms^ ^ from his house. The people flew to arms, and Neville 
fled for his life. The leader of discontent was now Brad- 
ford, a noisy demagogue, who summoned the counties to send delegates 
to a general meeting at Parkinson's Ferry in the following August. 
In the excitement of the time the mail was robbed and the discontented 
ones assembled in great numbers near Pittsburgh, probably to overawe 
the small garrison there. But the leaders lost courage and contented 
themselves with marching through the town as a demonstration of 
their power. 

It was high time for the forces of order to assert themselves, but 
Governor Mifflin, of Pennsylvania, feared to make himself unpopular 
with the farmers, and refused to call out the militia. Then 
Caiied^Out Washington decided to interfere. He sent out a proc- 
lamation against the rioters and called for fifteen thou- 
sand men from Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, to march by 
the first of September. Meanwhile, he sent commissioners to visit 
the back counties to see if the people could be persuaded to submit to 
the law. They arrived, with two commissioners appointed 
Subndssi*ve ^^ Mifflin, while the Parkinson Ferry meeting was in ses- 
sion. The quick response of the militia was by this time 
known in the West and caused the people to hesitate. Gallatin took 
advantage of the lull to urge moderation, and it was decided to 


appoint a committee to treat for peace. Bradford raised the cry that 
the enemy was winning through the use of money. There was much 
dissension in the back counties themselves, but the onward march of 
the army gave powerful support to those who wished peace. It was 
finally decided to send men across the mountains to ask Washington 
for better terms. 

Meanwhile, two divisions of troops were converging on the dis- 
affected region, one by way of Carlisle and Bedford, the other byway of 
Cumberland and the old Braddock road. They met at 
Parkinson Ferry on November 8, but no force showed ^""j^^g^^^-^ 
itself against them. At the demand of the military rection. 
power the people now submitted and took oaths of loyalty ; 
and 2500 troops were left in the country for the winter. Hamilton, 
who accompanied the army in a civil capacity, secured the arrest of 
such leaders as did not flee westward, and eighteen of them were sent 
to Philadelphia for trial. Of these only two were convicted, and they 
were pardoned by Washington. No further opposition was made to 
the excise, but it was still denounced by the republicans and was re- 
pealed when Jefferson became president. 

The force called out against the four counties in insurrection was 
larger than the number of men of military age in their limits. It was 
larger than most of the revolutionary armies, and larger 
than any army under Washington before the French of^theA^rmy. 
alliance. It was only one thousand men smaller than the 
allied American army which captured Cornwallis with 7000 men at 
Yorktown. A thousand men could have suppressed the insurrection. 
In calling for 15,000 Washington followed the suggestion of Hamilton, 
who wished to demonstrate the power of the government ; and in 
this respect the plan succeeded. But his opponents denounced it as 
showing the tendency of the federalists toward militarism. Hamil- 
ton's general policy of a strong government, which could intimidate 
the unruly, suited England, which he thought the best-governed 
country in the world. But it was a mistake in a country in which the 
unruly all had the ballot, for it tended to make them the political 
opponents of the party in power. 

Political Development under Washington 

Washington was elected president without regard to party. During 
the revolution all whigs stood together and division in the ranks was 
deplored. The first cabinet and the first congress were ^ . . . 
composed of men who had favored the adoption of the andVarty?" 
constitution ; for it was not probable that men should 
be selected to organize a government which they had not wished to 
establish. Washington's first appointments in the civil service were 
generally from the same class. When North Carolina and Rhode 


Island gave in their tardy submission to the constitution, he removed 
the antifederaUst revenue officers within their borders and appointed 
successors who were federalists. Nobody objected, for the anti- 
federalist group had no occasion to continue its existence and imme- 
diately disappeared. Washington hoped that his supporters would 
remain undivided and was distressed when he saw them forming 

This process began with the introduction of Hamilton's financial 
plan, which pleased the property-owning class and the advocates 
of a strong central government. Hamilton thought wealth 
. . p ®. ^"^^ ~ and intelligence would rule, partly because they could 
act promptly and with bold initiative, and partly because 
they would ever have great influence over less competent classes. 
Washington sympathized with this view and supported it when oc- 
casion arose throughout his administration. Thus was organized 
the Hamiltonian party, which took the name federalist because it 
sought to promote nationality. It was strongest in the trading 
cities, most of which were north of the Potomac, and among the large 
planters of the South. It was conservative and mildly aristocratic. 

Opposed to these views was Jefiferson, who had ever rejected a privi- 
leged class and who believed in democracy. He had great organizing 
ability, but was not a good public speaker. He realized 
The Repub- ^j-^^^^ ^Yiq middle and lower classes were a vast majority of 

llC9.Il rO.TT.'V 

Forming, ^^^ voters and might control the government if they could 
be organized into an effective party. The superior classes 
had their own organization ; he must make one. They had influence 
over the mass of voters ; he must break down that influence. He 
found many men who disliked Hamilton, never a considerate man to 
those who differed with him, others who held, as Jefferson, to the 
democratic theory, others who feared the concentration of national 
power, and still others who wished to make careers for themselves as 
leaders of a great party. Jefferson was able to select the best men of 
these groups, unite them in a common cause, restrain their passions, 
and furnish them with successful campaign issues. He founded 
newspapers which, in seeking to destroy the prestige of the 
federalists with the masses, accused them of many harsh purposes. 
They even attacked Washington, pronouncing him a monarchist. By 
these fierce onslaughts, and by taking advantage of every mistake of 
their adversaries, they slowly increased their power, and in 1800 ob- 
tained control of the government. They were known as republicans. 
There was some discontent in interior New England, but 
Republican ^^ye power of the seaports overwhelmed it, and here the 
thT Spates, republicans had little hope. Hamilton's enemies in New 
York, headed by Clinton, came readily into the move- 
ment. In Pennsylvania the country people were opposed to the rul- 
ing class in Philadelphia and became republicans gladly. In Virginia 


and North Carolina the great planters lived in the counties along the 
coast and the small farmers, far more numerous, lived in the uplands 
and generally followed Jefferson. In Georgia the same thing was true. 
In South Carolina the planters in the east and the Charleston mer- 
chants formed a powerful ruling class, but the men of the interior were 
republicans. In the new states of Kentucky and Tennessee the 
frontiersmen were fiercely democratic. Jefferson, therefore, had 
strong hopes of carrying all the South except Maryland and South 
Carolina, and had good chances in Pennsylvania and New York. In 
1792 these states had a majority of the electoral votes. 

Hamilton considered the situation alarming. Washington intended 
to retire to his estate, and it was likely that the federalists would sup- 
port John Adams for his successor. Adams was honest 
and capable, but unpopular out of New England. In Rg^g^iec'JfJ'" 
this dilemma Hamilton decided that Washington must 
stand for reelection. He was met at first with a refusal, but he got 
others to persuade Washington. Only one man, it was felt, could 
harmonize the contending parties. So strong was this feeling that 
even Jefferson joined his voice to the general demand, and in the end 
Washington consented to run. The republicans did not oppose him, 
but supported George Clinton for the vice-presidency against Adams. 
Washington received the votei of all the states, and Clinton those of 
New York, Virginia, North Carolina, and Georgia, with one from 
Pennsylvania, a total of 50 to Adams's 77. 

The hope that Washington would reconcile parties proved futile. 
In 1793 the European war began, the republicans espoused the cause 
of republican France, and denounced the neutrality proc- 
lamation. For a time this seemed to be an advantage, ^^^ ^°^ 
but the excesses of Genet reacted against them, and the 
federalists, most of whom leaned toward England, gained by declaring 
that their opponents would sacrifice the honor of the country for the 
sake of the infidel French republic. Indeed, from that time until 
1800 the French ministers were in cordial relations with republican 
leaders and did as much as they dared to secure the defeat of the 
federalists. Jefferson, now definitely head of the opposition, recog- 
nized that he was out of place in the cabinet and withdrew at the close 
of the year 1793 to give all his efforts to the republican cause. His 
place was taken by Edmund Randolph, a mild republican, but so 
strong was the tendency to party government that he retired within 
a year and was succeeded by Timothy Pickering, an avowed federalist. 

The republicans early in 1794 took a bolder attitude. 
Ceasing to plead for France, they began to demand war J^^°^s^ 
against England ; and they had cause enough. When the England. 
European conflict began, France opened to the world the 
trade with her West Indian possessions. Too weak at sea to succor 
them herself, she expected that they would sell their produce, chiefly 


sugar, to the United States and receive American merchandise in ex- 
change. England declared this unlawful, asserting that a trade denied 
in time of peace could not be opened in time of war. Her men-of-war 
began to seize American ships bound for the French islands and to 
treat the captured crews with unusual rigor. The stories of hardship 
that came back to our shores aroused the deepest horror, and the re- 
pubHcans took advantage of the opportunity to demand retaliation. 
The first move was made by Madison, in the house of representatives. 
If England, he urged, made restrictions on our trade, we 
Madison's ought to make restrictions of her trade with us. The fed- 
ResoLtions. eralists replied that since seven-eighths of our trade was 
with England and could not be shifted to another nation, 
we should injure ourselves more than England by passing the proposed 
restrictions. It was the same argument which England used against 
Adams's suggestion of retahation in 1785. The argument was so good 
that Madison's resolutions were postponed. 

About this time came news that England had ordered the seizure 
of all neutral ships carrying French goods. In America the excite- 
ment was great ; for we held that neutral ships made neu- 
Neutral ^j.^\ goods. The republicans talked earnestly of war, and 

Goods^° congress authorized the erection of fortifications, the enlist- 
ment of artillerymen, and the levying of a force of 80,000 
militia, to be ready for an emergency. The extreme republicans, led 
by Dayton, of New Jersey, introduced a resolution in the house to 
sequester British debts as an offset to the loss from the seizure of 
American ships. If this were passed, the result would probably be 

Washington was alarmed and decided to try to settle the dispute 
by making a treaty with England. Conservative republicans as well 
as federalists thought the attempt ought to be made ; and 
l^y^- in May, 1794, he sent Jay to London with powers to make 

a treaty which would secure the surrender of the Western 
posts still in the hands of England, get compensation for the ships 
recently seized, and effect a commercial treaty which would remove 
the irritation from further seizures of ships having French goods on 
board and which would open British West Indian ports to our trade. 
If these points could be arranged, thought Washington, war would 
be avoided. When Jay was dispatched, the war feeling cooled and the 
nation awaited the result. 

Jay was a federalist and of an easy temperament. He found the 
British government determined to maintain their existing navigation 
- , _ laws, and in his desire to make some kind of arrangement 

Jays rea y. g^(,(,gpj-g(j ^^gj-j^g j^ot allowed in his instructions. The treaty 
he sent back early in 1795 provided for surrender of the posts by 1796, 
and admitted us to the trade with the British East Indies, but onlv 
put off a settlement for the ships seized by Britain. It contained 


commercial regulations which admitted our ships not larger than 70 
tons' burden to British West Indian ports and denied us the right 
to carry West Indian products, including cotton, to Europe, while 
British ships were to be unrestricted in our own trade. It also pro- 
vided that privateers should not be fitted out in our ports by England's 
enemies, that Americans serving against England should be treated 
as pirates if captured, and that British trade in America should be on 
the footing of the most favored nation. These latter provisions were 
aimed at the French treaties of 1778. The West Indian clause of 
Jay's treaty were to end two years after the termination of the 
existing war. 

A storm of indignation greeted its publication in America, the 
republicans leading the chorus. Even the federalists could support 
it only faintly, and Washington was much in doubt. But 
reflection brought soberness. If the treaty were rejected, "^""^^^J *?" 
the nation would almost surely drift into war, for which it ^mend^* 
was not prepared. This view had weight with the senate, ments. 
which cut out the features relating to the West India trade 
and passed the treaty by the necessary two-thirds majority. Washing- 
ton hesitated to sign it, but finally yielded. He thought that if we 
could endure for twenty years the inferiority it forced us to accept, we 
should be strong enough to defy an unjust measure of any power in 
the world. 

An interesting question now arose. The treaty provided for some 
modifications of the laws and for the appropriation of money to exe- 
cute it. But this required the consent of congress, and 
thus the whole matter was debated in both houses in the t^Vxreaty" 
year 1796. Here conservatism again won, and it was 
ordered that the treaty be executed. The action in this case be- 
came a precedent in making later treaties. The long struggle over 
the question, culminating in the vehement debate in congress in 
1796, served to harden the lines of the two parties, and their strength 
is seen in the votes ; in the senate the resolution to execute the treaty 
passed without serious opposition, but in the house the vote was 51 
to 48, and a resolution declaring it highly objectionable was only 
defeated by the deciding vote of the speaker. 

When this vote was taken, the country was already thinking of a 
new presidential election. Washington let it be known that he would 
not be a candidate, and the federalists turned to Adams. . 

He was their strongest available man ; but he was tactless, ^ ^ 
though honest and experienced in public affairs. He was 
so independent that he would not follow the lead of Hamilton, who 
had formed a dislike for him, and who now sought to defeat him by an 
unworthy scheme. He had Thomas Pinckney, of South Carolina, 
brought forward for vice-president. Both men, he thought, would 
have equal votes in the choice of electors, but at the last moment he 


would have some of the electors go for a third candidate instead of 
voting for Adams, who thus having the second highest vote would 
be vice-president, while Pinckney, whom Hamilton could probably 
influence, would be president. The republicans united oh Jefferson, 
their best man. In the final vote some of the electors who were 
friendly to Adams refused to support Pinckney, lest Hamilton's scheme 
should succeed; and the result was that 71 men voted for Adams, 
68 for Jefferson, 59 for Pinckney, and 78 were divided among ten other 
candidates. Each elector, it will bo remerz jered, voted for two men. 
Adams thus became president and Joiferson vice-president. As 
Adams had only one more vote than a majority of the electors, he was 
dubbed by his opponents "a president b - one vote," an epithet which 
greatly annoyed his sensitive soul. 

Washington, thinking chiefly of his retirement, took little interest 
in the election. His last care was to prepare his celebrated "Farewell 

Address," in which he gave much good advice on the prob- 
Washing- lems of the day. As these problems were necessarily 
tirement. related to the pohcies over which the parties were divided 

and as his federalist leaning appeared in his advice, the 
" Address " was received with coolness by the republicans. He had be- 
come very unpopular with that party, and some of its leading men and 
newspapers rejoiced openly that he was going out of office. As the 
passions of the moment subsided, he recovered the popularity to which 
his character entitled him, and the next generation came to look on 
the " Farewell Address " as a priceless political lisritage. Among other 
things, it counseled his fellow citizen? to be loyal to the union, to 
cultivate harmony at home, and to shun entanglement with Euro- 
pean policies. His administration was most important, because his 
great name had been able to hold in abeyance through the first 
eight years of the national government the inevitable wrangling of 

parties, thereby giving an opportmiity to launch the 
Service^ government on a safe and enlightened plan. That critical 

early period safely past, it was not dangerous for party 
leaders to battle for their views, a necessary feature of all republican 


On Washington's two administrations the most available general secondary 
works are: Avery, The United States and its People, 7 vols. (1904-); Bassett, 
The Federalist System (1906); McMaster, History, 7 vols. (1883-) ; Schoule", 
History of the United States, 6 vols. (1880-1894) ; Hildreth, History, 6 vols. (1840- 
1852), federalist in sympathy; Hamilton, J. C, History of the Republic of the United 
States, 7 vols. (4th ed., 1879), ^ biased defense of Hamilton, but it contains valu- 
able letters; Gordy, History of Political Parties, 2 vols, (revised ed. 1904), an 
excellent book on early political parties; Johnston, Alexander, articles on political 
conditions and institutions in Lalor's Cyclopcedia of Political Science, republished in 
Woodburn, American Political History, 2 vols. (1905); Gibbs, The Administrations 
of Washington and Adams, 2 vols. (1846), very partisan, but it contains valuable 


letters; a.ndSta.nwood, History of the Presidency (igoo), an excellent summary oE 
national party divisions. 

For original sources see: Peters, ed., Public Statutes at Large of the United 
States, 8 vols. (1845) — treaties, Indian and foreign, are in vols. VII and VIII; 
Annals of Congress, 42 vols. (1834-1856), the early debates, but they are not 
reported verbatim; Benton, Abridgment of the Debates in Congress, ijSq-iS^o, 
24 vols. (1857-1863); Maclay, Journal, i^Sg-ijgi (1900), valuable because the 
early senate debates are not given in the Annals; Legislative Journal of the Senate, 
5 vols. (1820-1821) ; Executive Journal of the Senate, 2, vols. (1829); Journal of 
the House of Representatives, 9 vols. (1826) ; papers relating to the departments — ■ 
diplomatic, financial, military, and relating to Indians and lands — in American 
State Papers, 38 vols. (1832-1861) ; and Richardson, Messages and Papers of the 
Presidents, 10 vols. (1897). 

For the writings and biographies of Washington, Madison, Hamilton, Jefferson, 
John Adams, Jay, Patrick Henry, and Gerry see references on page 255. See also : 
Hamilton, Writings of Monroe, 7 vols. (1898-1903) ; King, Life and Correspondence 
of Rufus King, 6 vols. (1894-1900) ; Ames, ed., Works of Fisher Ames, 2 vols. (1857) ; 
Anne C. Morris, Diary and Letters of Gouverncur Morris, 2 vols. (1888); Adams, 
Writings of Albert Gallatin, 3 vols. (1879) ! ^.nd Wilkinson, Memoirs of my Own 
Times, T,\o\s. (1816), the last mentioned very untrustworthy. See the following 
biographies also: Brown, Life of Oliver Ellsivorth (1905); Adams, Life of Albert 
Gallatin (1879) ; Pickering and Upham, Life of Timothy Pickering, 4 vols. (1867- 
1875) ; Amory, Life of James Sidlivan, 2 vols. (1859) ; and Conway, Life of Thomas 
Paine, 2 vols. (1892). 

On the whisky insurrection see: Adams, Life of Gallatin (1879); Findley, 
History of the Insurrection {iyg6), a good contemporary account ; H. M. Bracken- 
ridge, //wiory 0/ ///c M'e^^erw /«57(rrfd/o« (1859), written from the standpoint of 
the participants; and Ward, The Insurrection of 1794 (Pennsylvania Hist. Soc. 
Memoirs, VI). 

On diplomatic affairs see : Trescott, Diplomatic History of the Administrations 
of Washington and Adams (1857), good but rare; Snow, Treaties and Topics in 
Atnerican Diplomacy (1894), for students ; Lyman, Diplomacy of the United 
States, 17S9-1826, 2 vols. (2d ed. 1828); McLaughlin, Western Posts and British 
Debts (Am. Hist. Assoc. Report, 1894) ; Turner, Correspondence of the French Min- 
isters to the United States, 1791-1797 (Ibid., 1903, II), contains Genet's correspon- 
dence ; and Shepherd, Wilkinson and the Beginnings of the Spanish Conspiracy {Am. 
Hist. Review, IX, 490). 

For Independent Reading 

Campbell, Travels in the Interior Inhabited Parts of North A.merica, 1791-1792 
(1793); Griswold, The Republican Court (1864); Hamilton, Life of Alexander 
Hamilton (1910) ; and Woodrow Wilson, George Washington (1897). 





The Political Character of the Administration 

John Adams began his presidency with a divided party. On one 
side were his own friends, neither numerous nor well organized ; on 
the other were Hamilton and his supporters, probably two- 
Adams" ° thirds of the federalists and not inclined to submit to the 
leadership of the other third. Adams retained Washing- 
ton's cabinet, which supported Hamilton in all party matters, so that 
the president came at last to realize that he was not head of his own 
administration. The internal conflict which thus arose weakened the 
federalist organization and contributed to its overthrow. Adams 
regretted the situation ; for he was peculiarly desirous of having a 
harmonious administration. When at last he found his cabinet in 
practical rebellion, he reorganized it, casting out the extremists and 
calling in moderate federalists, the chief of whom was Marshall of 
Virginia. But this occurred too late to avert party defeat. 

Adams's first action as president was an attempt to reunite the two 
political parties. He had been widely accused of favoring a form of 
monarchy ; but in his inaugural address he sought to over- 
Attempts to come this view by announcing his confidence in the con- 
Parties, stitution. The republicans openly expressed their satis- 
faction. He also proposed to appoint either Jefferson or 
Madison minister to France, but the offer was declined by both gentle- 
men. When the Hamilton faction heard of these negotiations, they 
objected flatly, and there was no more talk of reconciliation. The 
negotiations had, no doubt, been encouraged by the wily Jefferson, with 
the object of widening the breach between the federalist factions. 

Party rancor now became worse than ever. For Washington even 
his enemies had a respect which moderated the jibes of the bitterest 
. foe. For Adams there was no such regard. He was piti- 

Abuse*° lessly painted as a monarchist, a tyrant, and a selfish 
manipulator of patronage. Yet no president strove 
harder to carry on the government in the spirit of its founders. It was 
the youth of political discussion in America, and editors and pam- 
phleteers on both sides fought relentlessly for their principles. In 
France opponents of republicanism had recently gone to the guillo- 
tine in shoals ; in England defenders of republicanism had been im- 



prisoned or forced to flee the country ; it was, probably, as much as 
could be expected that in our own newly established republic the only 
violence that occurred was in the exchange of epithets. 

It was, also, inevitable that in such a discussion should appear the 
sharpest division between the British and French sympathizers. 
Republicans, in defending France, expressed their loyalty 
to popular government; federalists, in favoring the Brit- p f-t-^"; 
ish constitution, expressed their approval of government yoived. 
by the conservative upper classes of society, which implied 
a distrust of the rule of all the people. To the former the triumph 
of the Jay treaty seemed to show that British influence was alive in 
the country; to the latter the ill-concealed attempts of the French 
ministers in Philadelphia to direct American politics seemed convinc- 
ing evidence that the court in Paris worked in behalf of the republican 
party throughout the union. 

Unfortunately, the latter contention was true, as events connected 
with the dismissal of Monroe, late in Washington's second term, made 
clear. This ardent republican was sent to Paris in 1794 
to succeed Gouverneur Morris, whose monarchism made jyifg^on^ 
him unacceptable to the French republic. He arrived 
in August, when no other state, except the small republic of Geneva, 
had sent a minister to the new government. The Convention then 
ruled France, and so busy was it with its own struggle for existence 
that no arrangements had been made to receive foreign ministers. 
Monroe, not to be thwarted by this fact, made arrangements to be 
received by the Convention itself. He was accordingly admitted to an 
open session of that body, where amid the applause of the members 
he exchanged embraces with the president of the Convention and pre- 
sented a glowing address, pledging the cooperation in behalf of liberty 
of the two great republics, the one in the Old, and the other in the New, 
World. This display of fervor, occasioned protest in England, where 
Jay was negotiating his treaty ; and the federalist administration of 
Washington sent a reproof to the enthusiastic Monroe. 

Meanwhile, France was concerned at rumors of a treaty of amity 
between the United States and England, but Monroe, relying on as- 
surances from superiors, assured her that nothing would 
be accepted in the proposed agreement prejudicial to the jn'paris' ^°°^ 
interests of our oldest friend among nations. When the 
treaty was made, however, it was evident that it did weaken that 
preferential relation which the treaties of 1778 gave to France (see 
page 201) ; and the government in Paris felt that it had been deceived. 
Monroe himself was deeply chagrined, and neglected to defend the Jay 
treaty in Paris, as he was instructed to do by Pickering, then secretary 
of state. More than six months had passed in this way when he 
learned that the ministry was about to send an envoy to America to 
make a new treaty. Believing that such an attempt would result in 


failure, and peaceful relations would therefore be imperiled, he in- 
duced the ministry to delay their project. He was suspected of hold- 
ing out to them the prospect of a republican victory in the coming 
presidential elections, then only nine months distant. As the cam- 
paign opened, he was known to be sending information to republicans 
at home, which was used to convince the voters that the federalist 
administration was about to plunge the nation into war with France. 
Washington considered this action a breach of trust, and 
His Recall, ordered Monroe's immediate recall. The affair caused 
much comment, the republicans defending and the federal- 
ists condemning the dismissed minister. 

Monroe returned anxious for vindication, and took two ways of 
getting even. He prepared a long defense and published it in 1797, 
endeavoring to show that he had been badly treated by 
Revenee Pickering and Hamilton, the chief authors of federalist 
policy. It was a piece of specious pleading, but it satis- 
fied the republicans and served to bring French affairs sharply to the 
front in the political arena. His other stroke was at Hamilton particu- 
larly. Some years earlier that gentleman was the subject of an in- 
vestigation to meet the charge of misusing public money while secre- 
tary of the treasury. The committee of inquiry, consisting of Monroe 
and two others, pronounced him innocent, but did not publish the evi- 
dence. In fact, Hamilton had proved his innocence only by admit- 
ting that the charges grew out of an illicit relation with the wife of the 
worthless man who preferred the charges, and this evidence the com- 
mittee agreed to conceal. Soon after Monroe's return it was given 
to the public in such a distorted form that Hamilton felt 
lenominv ^ impelled to confess the whole matter in a published state- 
ment. The two other committeemen showed that they 
had not disclosed the affair, and posterity has concluded that the reve- 
lation was made by Monroe. It left a smirch on Hamilton's reputa- 
tion, which is not removed by the admiration we are compelled to 
feel for his courageous explanation of it. 

The Quarrel with France 

When Charles C. Pinckney, who succeeded Monroe at Paris, arrived 
at his post of duty, he found the government in a resentful mood. He 
„. , sent his credentials to the Directory, now the head of the 

X^1I1CKI16V • 

Rejected. government, only to be informed that France would not 
receive an American minister until her grievances were 
redressed. A law of the republic, passed when most strangers were 
held to be spies, forbade foreigners to remain in France without 
written permission. Pinckney asked for such permission, but received 
no reply. He disregarded an intimation that a further stay made him 
liable to arrest, because he wished the responsibility for his departure, 


if he must go, to rest clearly with the government. After two months 
of delay he received an official notice that he was liable to arrest, 
whereupon he asked for his passports and shook the dust of France off 
his feet in February, 1797. His rude reception was thrown into 
bolder relief by the evidence of good will which the Directory 
showered on Monroe, when he took his departure about the same 

When Pinckney's humiliating treatment was known in America, 
there was a violent outbreak of feeling, and many expressions of 
hostility were heard ; for the people are ever ready to re- 
sent an insult to the national dignity. Among the poli- ^^^^1^°^ 
ticians the extreme federalists wished to suspend relations 
with France, and if reprisals occurred, which would lead to war, they 
would be all the better pleased. They were led by Pickering and Wol- 
cott, in the cabinet, and by Harper and William Smith, in congress. 
The republicans could not defend the action of France, but declared 
that it only indicated the mismanagement of the federalist party. 
Between these two views was a middle ground taken by moderate 
men, who defended the national honor, but were willing to try other 
diplomatic efforts while preparations for war went on. Of this opinion 
was President Adams, who in all the clamor of the day did not lose 
his poise. Hamilton, not wilUng to sacrifice country to party, took 
the same ground, although in doing so he failed to act with the faction 
which generally supported him. The upshot was that Adams nomi- 
nated Charles C. Pinckney, John Marshall, and Francis Dana com- 
missioners to try to adjust the existing difficulty with France. The 
republicans supported the nominations which were con- 
firmed. But Dana refused to serve, and Adams, returning ^io™g™s^seut 
to a favorite idea, nominated Gerry, a Massachusetts j^ France, 
republican, in his stead. He thought the presence of 
a republican on the commission would tend to conciliate the Directory. 

Steps were also taken to put the nation in a state of defense. 
Three years earlier, congress had ordered the construction of six frig- 
ates, three of which were actually begun, but were still 
unfinished through lack of funds. They were now ordered J^'^^g^f'^^r" 
completed. They were the United States and the Constitu- -^^j^ 
tion, of 44 guns each, and the Constellation, of 36 guns, the 
first ships of our navy under the constitution. They were heavily 
armed for their size, and foreign naval officers predicted they could 
not be managed safely in battle, — an expectation which later events 
did not justify. Other measures of defense were a law authorizing 
the president to call out 80,000 militia when needed and a law to 
strengthen the fortifications. 

By this time serious grounds for trouble had arisen in connection with 
our trade at sea. When, four years earlier, England began to seize 
our ships carrying French goods, France retaliated by ordering her 


naval ofi&cers to seize neutral ships which recognized England's pre- 
tensions. If we allowed England's claim that provisions were contra- 
band, contraband they were ; and on that ground France would seize 
them when they were bound for British ports. Between 
French Re- ^j^g pretensions of the two great powers it was impossi- 
American ^^^ ^^^ ^ nation which had no navy to maintain a posi- 
Trade. tion of Strict neutrality. It was equally difhcult for it 

to retaUate, unless it was willing to join one of the nations in 
war against the other. For such action we were not ready, and the 
best we could do was to endure our wrongs and hope to get reparation 
for losses after peace returned in Europe. Neither America nor 
Europe could foresee that the war then waged was to continue without 
considerable interruption until 1815. As time passed, many cases of 
seizure occurred, and there was now danger that American shipowners, 
already aroused against France, would by some act of reprisal provoke 
such severe individual conflicts that it would be impossible longer to 
restrain the war feeling on the part of our people. Adams, therefore, 
issued an order forbidding merchant ships to go armed, and congress 
passed a law prohibiting privateering against a nation with which we 
were at peace. By such means it was hoped to preserve peace until 
the commissioners to France could make a settlement of the existing 

Arrived in Paris, Pinckney, Marshall, and Gerry began to negotiate 
in October, 1797. To their surprise they made not a step of progress. 
„ Y . Talleyrand was head of foreign affairs, and the Directory 
' ' ' was corrupt to the core. They had taken an overbearing 

attitude toward small European states, each of which had some self- 
ish end to advance, and were collecting bribes from them before they 
would allow any arrangements to be made. What they did so freely 
with such states, they were now determined to do with the United 
States. While our commissioners waited for their business to be taken 
up, they were visited by agents, designated in the published reports 
of the commissioners as X, Y, and Z, who suggested that progress 
would be made if the minister were given $250,000. To this sugges- 
tion, several times repeated, the commissioners opposed a steadfast 
negative. Then they refused to see the agents, but prepared a state- 
ment of the American case and sent it to Talleyrand. His reply, de- 
layed two months, was insulting. He accused the United States of 
prolonging the misunderstanding for their own benefit, asked why 
three republican commissioners were not sent, and closed by saying 
that he would treat with Gerry alone. To this coarse message a dig- 
nified reply was made, and the commissioners prepared to 
Conduct. withdraw. Ere they went, Gerry was invited by Talley- 
rand to remain and continue communication with the min- 
istry. He hesitated a moment and then accepted, declaring that he 
did so only as a private citizen and in the hope that he might be 


able to prevent war. His action was ill advised. It produced resent- 
ment at home, and Adams summoned him to return instantly. 

April 3, 1798, the "X, Y, Z papers," as the correspondence of the 
commissioners was called, was sent to congress by the president, who 
declared: "I will never send another minister to France 
without assurances that he will be received, respected, AnOutburst 
and honored as the representative of a free, powerful, and ^ion. 
independent nation." The moderate federalists now 
joined the extremists, and many acts were passed looking to war. 
By one of them a navy department was created, by another three new 
frigates and thirty smaller vessels were ordered, by another the navy 
was authorized to take French ships interfering with our commerce, 
and by still another the treaties of 1778 were repealed. Another law 
authorized an army of 10,000 men to serve for three years. All this 
fell short of a declaration of war, and to that extent the extreme fed- 
eralists were disappointed. From this time Hamilton was for war. 

The few ships in the na\y were quickly in West Indian waters, 
fourteen men-of-war and eight converted merchantmen. There the 
Constellation fell in with Ulnsurgent, whose commander ,, 
had seized many of our merchant vessels and was much 
hated in America. An hour's chase followed, the Frenchman trying 
to avoid conflict, as he was instructed to do by his superiors. At last 
he was overhauled, and a spirited action of an hour and a quarter forced 
him to surrender. As the angry French captain came aboard the Con- 
stellation, he exclaimed: "Why have you fired on the national flag? 
Our two nations are at peace." The reply of the American captain, 
Truxtun, was laconic: "You are my prisoner." The victory 
aroused great enthusiasm in America. A short time later Truxtun 
met and fought a drawn battle with the French ship La Vengeance, 
and many other smaller engagements followed. In two years and a 
half our ships had taken 84 French ships, mostly privateers. The 
result was a lessening of the number of seizures and added prestige 
for the navy. This period of retaliation has been called a war with 
France, but no state of war was recognized by the two governments. 

Meanwhile, the organization of the new army was begun. Wash- 
ington was appointed its commander and accepted, on condition that 
he should name the chief subordinates. He sent three 
names to Adams, — Hamilton, Charles C. Pin,ckney, and ^^mv ^^ 
Knox. Confirmed in this order, the first would rank next 
to Washington. Adams remembered old scores and ordered that they 
should rank according to their station in the old army, — Knox, Pinck- 
ney, and Hamilton. Now the last named was a good military man, 
and Washington wanted him first among the three. Since the head of 
the army was too old to take the field, it meant that Hamilton would 
conduct the field movements. A strong controversy arose between 
the friends of Knox and Hamilton. Adams decided at first for Knox, 


but when Washington made a vigorous protest, the president dared not 
ignore it, and Hamilton received the coveted station. He had retired 
from civil life, but he loved the soldier's career, and as the federalists 
meant to make the augmented army a permanent thing, the appoint- 
ment was very attractive to him. He had much influence with 
Washington, and used it freely to get that final intervention which 
forced Adams to change the order of nominations. Adams did not 
relish the way he was treated; he felt that he was hardly commander- 
in-chief of the army, as the constitution provided; but he was not 
willing to withstand the will of Washington. 

Hamilton's success did him no good. Recruiting went on so slowly 
that 1799 was well advanced before a fair beginning was made. By 
this time enthusiasm was waning, and the newly-formed 
Slow"' '°^ camps became scenes of discontent and disorder. The 
republicans denounced the whole affair as ill advised. 
They divined their enemy's purpose to have a permanent establish- 
ment, and pointed out the tendency to militarism. This new army 
became an important argument in the campaign of 1800. 

In fact, a little reflection showed that war was unnecessary. France 
did not wish it, or she would have resented our attacks on her men- 
of-war. To have asked our commissioners for a bribe was 

„„^1^^"' discreditable to her, but we need not fight on account of it. 
necessary. ' '^ 

Many people saw this, Adams among them, and he decided 
to secure a restoration of harmony, if it could be done with dignity. 
The proper occasion offered when in October, 1798, Murray, our 
minister at The Hague, wrote that he was assured from Talleyrand 
that a minister would now be received. Adams wished to send one, 
but his cabinet, led by the factious Pickering, opposed. As the winter 
passed, he realized that the extremists were bent on bringing on war 
for their own ends, and determined to take affairs into his own hands. 

Without warning, he nominated Murray minister to France, 
Treaty '^^^^ ^^^ senate received the news in disgust. Hamilton, 

disappointed, declared nothing better could be expected 
from Adams, and the other extremists raged inwardly. But they could 
not resist, and accepted the suggestion after substituting three com- 
missioners for the one minister proposed. The result was an accept- 
able treaty, made in 1800, which settled for a time the chief points of 
controversy between the two nations. Napoleon was now in control 
in France. Occupied with vast plans in Europe, he wisely gave up 
the policy pursued by the directory of nursing American politics in 
the hope that a republican triumph on this side of the water would 
promote French interests. 



Adams's atlitude toward P'rance has the approval of posterity. 
Unfortunately, his political principles were as narrow as those of other 
federalists. Like the rest of his party, he wished to enforce 
respect for public officials, and he resented the vast amount p^^'?^'^ 
of abuse which came from the republican editors and view's. 
writers. As many of these men were of foreign birth, 
some of them fugitives from their own countries, he felt that they 
ought to be restrained. Their activity during the year war was immi- 
nent with France was the basis of a charge that they were French 
spies ; and on that basis it was easy to conclude they should be sent out 
of the country. From this conviction proceeded four laws of congress 
passed with the support of extreme and moderate federalists. 

The first related to naturalization. A law of 1795 made five years of- 
residence necessary for naturalization. To most federalists this seemed 
too short, and many would have withheld the right entirely. 
But the words of the constitution seemed to imply that tion^Act'^*' 
naturalization should not be denied, and it was at last 
agreed to require fourteen years' residence, with the provision that 
naturalized persons must have declared their intentions five years 
before the right could be operative. The law was resented by the 
republicans, and the provisions of 1795 were restored by a law enacted 
by them in 1802. 

The second law dealt with aliens in times of peace. It gave the 
president the power to order out of the country any alien whom he 
thought dangerous to the welfare of the country. If he 
were not obeyed, he might order the person concerned to L^^g '*° 
be imprisoned for three years, and if such a person should 
return after going away, imprisonment might be inflicted at the will 
of the president. This act was to continue two years. 

The third act concerned aliens in time of war. They might 
be ordered out of the country or imprisoned as long as the pres- 
ident chose. The act was limited to the duration of a war. The 
republicans deplored loudly the fate of the " poor aliens," whose 
safety was thus put at the disposal of the president. In time 
of war or an invasion he was to have the power to issue a proc- 
lamation declaring what classes of aliens should be allowed to 
remain in the United States, and the federal courts were to see 
that it was not defied. Many Frenchmen left the country when 
the law was about to pass, which is probably all it was expected 
to accomplish. No attempt was made to apply either alien law to 
those who remained. 

The fourth act dealt with American citizens, who denounced the 
administration or upheld France. It made it a high misdemeanor 


"unlawfully to combine" against the legal measures of the govern- 
ment, to impede any officer in the execution of his duty, or to at- 
tempt to form any conspiracy, insurrection, or unlawful 
J. ^^ assembly against the administration. The penalty was to 

be imprisonment not more than five years and a fine of not 
more than $5000. It also made it a misdemeanor to issue a false or 
malicious writing against the president or congress in order to stir up 
hatred against them. For this offense the defendant, on conviction, was 
to be fined not more than $2000 and imprisoned not longer than two 
years. With some difficulty the republicans and moderates introduced 
into the law a clause allowing the accused to prove the truth of his 
assertion. The first of these four acts was passed June 18, the last on 
July 14, 1798. 

Many persons were indicted under the sedition act : only ten were 
brought to trial, and all of these were convicted. The most notable 
case was that of Dr. Thomas Cooper, then an editor in 
Prosecu- Pennsylvania. He was arrested for saying that President 
Sedition. Adams was incompetent and had, as president, interfered 
to influence the course of justice. In our day we should 
hardly notice such a charge, so freely is the conduct of even the highest 
official held up to ridicule and condemnation. He was tried before 
Chase, a federal judge, who displayed, as in all such cases, the greatest 
amount of partisanship. Cooper offered to prove the truth of the 
charge by summoning Adams and some members of congress as wit- 
nesses ; but they refused to attend. In default of such evidence he 
was convicted, fined $400, and sent to prison for six months. Adams 
was willing to pardon him, but the prisoner refused to petition for 
pardon unless the president acknowledged wrongdoing in giving out 
a letter Cooper had written him. The president would make no such 
acknowledgement, and the sentence was not remitted. 

Every man convicted became a martyr to free speech, in the eyes 
of the republicans. The issue came up in the election of 1800 and had 
great weight in convincing the voters that the federalists were drunk 
with power. All these repressive laws were, in fact, ill-advised. They 
rested on the theory that the people should not be free to discuss, as 
they chose, the actions of their rulers. European governments, as 
Chase pointed out in the case of Dr. Cooper, exercised the right to 
punish libel ; but the European governments were not republican. 
Punishing a citizen for political utterances is a bad policy in a govern- 
ment resting on popular suffrage. 

The republicans believed the alien and sedition acts an invasion 
of the personal rights which, as they held, were properly within the 
sphere of action by the states. They also decried the creation of an 
army under the control of the aggressive Hamilton. It seemed to them 
that by a system of loose construction the federalists would concentrate 
the powers of government in the hands of president, congress, and the 


federal courts, and reduce to a much lower rank the authority of the 
states, to which the republicans looked as the guarantee of the rights 
of the individual. The federalists, as in 1787, replied that the rights 
of the individual would be as safe at the hands of the general govern- 
ment as at the hands of the states. The reply did not satisfy the re- 
publicans, who demanded a strict interpretation of the constitution. 
Some of them despaired of checking the plans of their opponents, and, 
recurring to an idea entertained by some of the representatives of 
the large states in the convention of 1787, proposed to Jefferson to 
begin agitation for the secession of Virginia and North Carolina, in 
order to establish a great Southern republic into which the power of 
the trading states of the North would not enter. Such a movement 
would almost surely have the support of Kentucky and Tennessee ; 
Georgia would probably support it with her control of the great un- 
settled Gulf region ; and it was hardly to be doubted that it would 
eventually carry with it the state of South Carolina, in which the 
federalist families of the seacoast held only temporary supremacy. 
The whole region was more than half of the national domain, giving 
to the North all the vast unsettled Northwest. It had, however, 
only 40 per cent of the entire population, and its political strength 
was still less proportionally through the provision that only three- 
fifths of its slaves counted in representation. 

These suggestions were rejected by Jefferson. We ought not, he 
said, to become discouraged because of the triumph of opponents, 
but endeavor to overcome it by political means. Then 
he unfolded his plan. Believing that all the states had the pian"°° ^ 
same interest in protecting their authority, he would unite 
them in a crusade against national concentration. He secured the 
cooperation of Madison, and each wrote resolutions condemning the 
recent enactments of the federalist congress and pointing out in what 
ways the rights of the states were threatened. Madison's resolutions 
were adopted by the Virginia assembly. Jefferson's were intended for 
North Carolina, but the elections of 1798 in that state showed federal- 
ist gains in the legislature, and he would not send them thither for 
adoption. They were placed in the hands of friends in Kentucky, 
where republicanism was strong, and passed the legislature of that state 
by a large majority. 

The purport of each set of resolutions was the same, although the 
Kentucky resolutions used language more explicit and emphatic. 
Both sought to find in the states a power to stay the general 
government in its assumption that it could interpret the pac^t Theory 
constitution. Suppose a controversy exists as to whether 
the union or the state should exercise a certain power, who shall de- 
termine it ? The federalists asserted that the supreme court had the 
decision. They stood by the idea that the constitution was made 
by the people and that the national authority rested on popular con- 


sent as truly as the state authority. Jefferson and Madison declared 
that the states founded the national government by making a compact 
whose terms were expressed in the constitution and that it was for 
the states, the creators, to determine when the compact was broken. 
Both sets of resolutions declared that the alien and sedition acts, 
and some other recent legislation of congress, violated the consti- 
tution, and called on the states for cooperation in preventing their 

By what means should the state's veto be given ? Virginia was dis- 
creetly general on the point. If ungranted power was exercised, said 
she, the states could and should "interpose for arresting 
Correction ^^^^ progress of the evil, and for maintaining within their 
respective limits the authorities, rights, and liberties ap- 
pertaining to them." Interposition by the states might be construed 
as calling a convention to amend the constitution, as provided in the 
constitution. But Kentucky was more explicit. The states, said 
her resolutions, founded the union for specific purposes and gave it 
expressed powers, reserving all authority to themselves which they 
did not grant to the union ; an exercise of ungranted power was illegal ; 
the union was not a judge of its own powers ; and each party to the 
compact of the union is a judge of the terms of union, as in all cases 
of compact where there is no common judge. In accordance with this 
principle they declared the alien and sedition acts and certain other 
laws of congress "void and of no force." 

In the hot debates of the convention of 1787 nothing was said 
directly about the compact theory. Virginia and most of the South 
then stood for a national government on a popular basis, 
Efficacy of evidently thinking their greater size would enable them 
Theory. ^^ Control it. Except for equal representation in the 

senate and the tenth amendment reserving to the states 
all powers not granted to the national government, there was no 
specific limitation of nationality in the constitution. If the convention 
had held so important a view, it can hardly be doubted that it would 
have defined it. Neither Jefferson nor Madison, in fact, claimed that 
words in the constitution, except the tenth amendment, supported the 
compact theory. It was a deduction from extra-constitutional sources. 
No government with a due respect for its own authority will accept 
in practical matters a principle so purely speculative. 

Both Jefiferson and Madison were experienced politicians. They 
did not expect the federal government to accept their view and re- 
linquish its pretended authority. But they believed that 
A Polrtic^al gj-^^-g resolutions were powerful means of calling attention 
to the federalist tendency toward concentration. Although 
the two sets of resolutions were sent to the other states in the 
union, they did not expect them to be accepted by the federalist 
then generally dominant in the Northern legislatures. But they 


thought the attention of the voters would be called in the most striking 
way to an evil they believed to exist with good effect on succeeding 
elections. Madison asserted in his old age that the Kentucky and Vir- 
ginia resolutions were planned for political effect. When the republi- 
cans came into control of the government two years later, they made 
no effort to amend the constitution in accordance with the compact 

All the states north of the Potomac, through their legislatures, 
made replies unfavorable to the resolutions, some of them expressed 
in terms hardly polite. None of the legislatures of 
states south of Virginia voted on them, probably because Attitude of 
the republicans thought it wise to let well enough alone, states 
When the Northern replies were received, Kentucky and 
Virginia passed resolutions reasserting the views in the first sets. 
In those now announced by Kentucky occurred the sentence: "A 
nullification, by those sovereignties, of all unauthorized acts done under 
color of that instrument, is the rightful remedy." This is the only 
appearance of the word "nullification" in any of the resolutions, but 
the essential idea is in the first set passed by Kentucky. 
Thirty years later it came up again in the Nullification N^Hfi°'t'*° 
movement in South Carolina, whose promoters thought 
that stressing the similarity of their doctrines with those of 1798 would 
draw Virginia to their side. 

Overthrow of the Federalists 

The congressional elections of 1798 came while the country still 
looked for war with France, and the results favored the federalists. 
But that party was still divided into radicals and moderates, 
the former led by Pickering with the support of Hamilton, oivWed^*^ 
the latter led by Adams with the strong support of Marshall 
and a group of Southern federalists in the house. When the president 
threw over the war policy of his party in the spring of 1799 he had the 
support of the moderates, and the extremists lost a valuable political 
issue. They expressed their contempt for Adams openly, which only 
divided his party more than ever. The split became more evident 
when Adams, in 1800, dismissed Pickering and forced McHenry to with- 
draw from the cabinet because they refused to carry out his policy with 
regard to making a treaty with France. He retained Wolcott, equally 
guilty with the men dismissed, because he did not know the extent 
of Wolcott's treachery. In Pickering's post he placed Marshall, 
who was not popular in the North, and the dispossessed faction began 
to plot to defeat the reelection of a president who showed them so much 
hostility. As it was evident that the federalists would take Adams 
for their candidate in 1800, this dissention augured little for party 


Meanwhile, the republicans were united for Jefferson. The Vir- 
ginia and Kentucky resolutions gave them a strong principle on which 
to appeal to the voters, and they strengthened their position 
Republicans ^^ criticizing the administration at every possible point. 
Preparations for war had involved heavy expenses, the 
national debt had grown during the eleven years of federalist control, 
and this gave ground for charging the party with extravagance. The 
evident desire of Hamilton to make the new army permanent induced 
the charge that he leaned toward militarism. In March, 1800, 
congress ordered the dismissal of the new army, and this was a blow 
at the extreme federalists. The assertion of the right to impress 
American sailors aroused great feeling against England, 
p .®*'^. J which reacted against the party which had usually stood 

by that country. Beneath all the arguments drawn from 
these and other sources was the continual assertion that the federalists 
stood for the rule of a selfish upper class, dominated by the capitalists, 
while the republicans represented the mass of the people. The asser- 
tion was generally true. The federalists had ignored the popular 
nature of American government, and Jefferson at last had organized 
the great mass of farmers and working people in a party which would 
correct recent tendencies toward class domination. It was the first 
of several great periodic popular upheavals by which the people have 
shown that they mean the government to rest on the will of all the 

In this campaign the nominating caucus was fully developed. In 
1796 republican and federalist senators and representatives, acting 
for their respective parties, held conferences and recom- 
mended presidential candidates to the people. But their 
action was not accepted as binding the party leaders ; for although 
the electors generally favored the caucus candidate for president there 
was much scattering in the vote for vice-president. Early in 1800 cau- 
cuses were again held. Adams was recommended by the federalists, 
and his friends insisted that the entire party was bound to support 
him. When Hamilton and his faction showed a contrary purpose they 
were pronounced party traitors. The republicans had their own in- 
ternal jealousies. Virginia expected to carry most of the South for 
Jefferson, but she needed the support of a strong Northern state, for 
which purpose New York seemed best suited. Clinton, of that state, 
did not like the Virginia leadership, as was shown in the convention 
of 1787 ; but at this time he was held in check in New York by Aaron 
Burr, able, but distrusted by many men. Burr was willing to make 
alliance with Virginia, and in 1796 he was supported as the regular 
candidate for vice-president. But in that year he received only 30 
votes to Jefferson's 68, and only one of the- thirty was from Virginia. 
He felt he was badly dealt with, and in 1800 demanded assurances 
that he would be supported equally with Jefferson. His terms were 


accepted by the caucus and by the party ; and for many years there- 
after the decision of the caucus was considered binding on the party. 

In the autumn of 1800 the differences between Adams and Hamilton 
precipitated a disastrous factional fight. Adams, frank by nature, 
expressed himself freely about the opposition of the ad- 
verse faction. As several members of the group lived Hamilton's 
in Essex county, Massachusetts, he dubbed them the gga^nst^ 
"Essex Junto." Hamilton was stung to the quick. He Adams, 
thought his own position in the party threatened, and wrote 
a pamphlet for secret circulation among the federalists, in which he 
declared that his friends did not constitute a British faction, as 
charged by Adams. Had he stopped there the result would not have 
been bad ; but he went on to attack Adams, recognized party leader, 
and the gleeful approbation of his friends shows that they thought 
the best part of the affair would be the destruction of the president. 
The pamphlet fell into the hands of the republicans, who republished 
it with exaggerations, and thus forced the author to issue an authentic 
copy. Then the world beheved that Hamilton had violated his party 
allegiance. There followed a reaction more damaging to Hamilton 
personally than to his opponent. Each man had his followers, and 
they became so embittered toward one another that party success 
was impossible. 

While the country was still talking about this incident, the election 
was held. Adams got all the votes from New England, 39 in number, 
10 from New Jersey and Delaware, 7 of Pennsylvania's 
15, as well as 5 of Maryland's 10, and 4 of North Carolina's J^^J^°^? 
12 — in all, 65. One elector in Rhode Island, fearing ^^^^^ ^g^^ 
treachery on the part of the extremists, voted for Adams 
and Jay, so that Pinckney, running with Adams, had only 64 votes. 
Jefferson had all the other votes, a total of 73. Burr, who ran with 
him, had the same number, and as neither had the highest number of 
votes cast, there was no election, and the house of representatives 
must select a president, the delegation of each state having one vote. 

The republicans had a majority of the electoral college, and the 
people had voted with the intention of making Jefferson president 
and Burr vice-president. Would the house execute the 
popular will, or would it act on its own judgment ? The J^^'^u^'^ '" 
federahsts were of the latter opinion, and made a plan to jggj^ 
carry their own states for Burr with a hope of bringing 
him into the presidency while Jefferson got the second place. In a 
caucus of their party they carried through their plan. Burr pro- 
tested against it, but in such weak tones that it was thought that he 
was privy to the scheme. It is hardly probable that the federalists 
would have supported him without some kind of promise in their 
behalf, though this does not mean that Burr meant to keep such a 
promise once he was president. When the house came to act, Jefferson 


had eight of the sixteen states and Burr had six, two being divided. Then 
Hamilton showed that moral quality which raised him in great crises 
above party. He disliked Jefferson, but believed him better than 
Burr, whom he well knew to be faithless to promises. Through his 
efforts the federalist representatives from Vermont, Delaware, and 
Maryland were induced to refrain from voting, and on the thirty-sixth 
ballot, February 17, 1801, Jefferson received the votes of ten states 
and was declared president-elect. Burr never forgave Hamilton his 
part in the election and, although vice-president, was thenceforth an 
ill-disposed partner in the republican administration. This situation, 
which caused so much anxiety at the time, was responsible for the 
adoption of the twelfth amendment, 1804, by which electors voted 
specifically for president and vice-president. 


General secondary works for Adams's administration are the same as those for 
the preceding chapter. The same is true for the original sources and for the writ- 
ings and biographies of leading men. On special phases of the administration the 
following works are valuable : 

The Kentucky and Virginia resolutions : texts are in A merican History Leaflets, 
No. 15, and in MacDonald, 5(fe; Documents (1897); also in YXYiot, Journal and 
Debates of the Federal Convention (1830), IV, App., pp. 357-388, which contains 
also the second resolutions with the replies of some of the states ; Anderson, 
Contemporary Opinion of the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions {Am. Hist. Review, 
V, 45, 225), contains a full discussion; Warfield, The Kentucky Resolutions of 
1798 (1887), a narrative history with brief mention of the Virginia resolutions; 
Powell, N idlification and Secession in^ the United States (1897), has a chapter on the 
resolutions of 1798; Loving, Nullification, Secession, etc. in the United States (iSg^), 
combats the theory that the constitution is a growth ; and Bassett, Federalist System 
(1906), chap. XVIII. 

On the alien and sedition acts, see accounts in the Histories by MacMaster, 
Avery, Hildreth, and Schouler; Bassett, Federalist System (1906) ; Rives, Madison 
(1859-1868) ; Hunt, Madison {igo2) ; Randall, /('^fr.yo» (1858), partisan; Tucker, 
Jejfferson (1837), defends Jefferson; Adams, C. F., John Adams, 2 vols. (1871), 
the federalist side. 

On party politics: Gordy, History of Political Parties, 2 vols. (ed. 1904), deals 
with French situation at length; Stanwood, History of the Presidency (1898), 
chap. V, a good summary of the elections of 1800 and 1801 ; Morse, A. D., Party 
Revolution of iSoo (Am. Hist. Assoc. Report, 1894); Ibid., The Politics of John 
Adams {Am. Hist. Review, IV); Farrand, Tlie Judiciary Act of iSoi (Ibid., V); 
South Carolina in the Presidential Election of iSoo (Ibid., IV), contains letters from 
C. C. Pinckney; also lives and writings of Adams, Jefferson, Hamilton, and 

On the naval operations of the time : Maclay, History of tite United States Navy, 
3 vols. (rev. ed., 1898-1901); Maclay, History of American Privateers (1899); 
Spears, History of Our Navy, 5 vols. (1S97-1898), a popular narrative. 

For Independent Reading 

Morse, J. T., Life of John Adams (1885) ; Maclay, History of American Priva- 
teers (1899) ; Weld, Travels through tlie States of North America and Canada, 2 vols. 
(1799), very popular when published; and D wight, Travels in New England and 
New York, 4 vols. (1821-1822), an excellent book. 




Republican Reforms 

From the beginning of his administration Jefferson rejected the 
ceremonials which his party had denounced, and which the federalists 
defended on the ground that they created respect for the 
government. The carriage of state with six horses was simplicity! 
discarded, and he rode horseback and unattended through 
the streets of the capital, like any other well-mounted citizen. The 
formal weekly receptions became levees to which any citizens who 
chose might come unannounced. The annual speeches to congress, 
which reminded the republicans too pointedly of the king's speech 
to parHament, became written annual messages, reports of the 
executive on the state of the nation. Federalists ridiculed these 
changes, but the people were pleased. 

The inauguration was equally simple. Jefferson came to Washing- 
ton as a private citizen, lodged at a tavern, and just before noon 
on March 4 walked up Capitol Hill, accompanied by a 
group of friends, to take the oath of office administered by auguration. 
Jolin Marshall, a strong and determined federalist, whom 
Adams a few weeks earlier had appointed chief justice. His inaugural 
address has long been considered a great state paper. Good citizens, 
he said in effect, must recognize the right of the majority to rule, but 
the majority must not oppress the minority. It was time to lay aside 
the bitterness of controversy and to remember that political intol- 
erance was as bad as religious intolerance. Differences of opinion 
are natural, but federalists and republicans are alike Americans and 
should unite to preserve the union and representative concjuation 
government. He pleaded in noble language for peace, 
cooperation in developing the resources of a great country, and 
patriotism and good will in realizing the blessings of liberty. These 
words were calculated to pacify the fears that the republicans would 
overthrew the foundations of society, so sedulously aroused by the 
federalists in the late campaign. It was Jefferson's dearest wish to 
conciliate his enemies, especially those in the North, who had been led 
to believe him an atheist and something of an anarchist. 



He announced his principles in terms his followers never forgot. 
He wished to see, he said, "a. wise and frugal government, which 
shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave 
Pohtica them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of in- 

dustry and improvement, and shall not take from the 
mouth of labor the bread it has earned." He enumerated many means 
of achieving these ends, among them "equal and exact justice to all 
men," "honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliance with 
none," the preservation of the rights of the states as the best guardians 
of domestic concerns, the support of the union "in its whole consti- 
tutional vigor," "the supremacy of the civil over the military author- 
ity," the rights of popular election as the only arbiter short of revolu- 
tion, the sufficiency of a well-estabhshed militia, payment of the 
national debt, and economy in public expenditures. So deeply did 
these principles sink into the minds of the people at large that no later 
party or candidate has dared to repudiate them. 

The new cabinet was wisely chosen. Madison became secretary of 
state, Albert Gallatin, the best financier in the party, became secretary 
of the treasury. General Dearborn, of Massachusetts, 
c b' t ^^^ secretary of war, Levi Lincoln, of the same state, 
attorney-general, and Robert Smith, of Maryland, secre- 
tary of the navy. The postmaster-general, Gideon Granger, of Con- 
necticut, was not then in the cabinet, but the post was important 
because of the many subordinates. Assigning three of these places 
to New England shows how much it was desired to conciliate the people 
of that section. Dearborn and Smith were not strong men, but 
Jefferson did not propose to make much use of army or navy. 

In their day of power the federalists were very bitter toward the 
republicans. They called them "the rabble," filled the offices with 
their own partisans, appointed only their friends to the 
Appoint- federal judgeships, and in February, 1801 , created a number 
Office. o^ ^^w courts, spending their last moments of power in 

filling them with their own followers. Their opponents 
were naturally exasperated, and came into office eager for spoils. 
Jefferson wisely withstood the demand ; for he saw that the thing for 
his party to do was to dispel the charge that it would overthrow the 
established order. He refused to remove officials unless it was shown 
that they were guilty of misconduct or of partisanship. He was thus 
able to prevent wholesale removals, which disappointed some of his 
hungry supporters. He refused to deliver commissions for the 
"midnight appointments," that is, the court officials under the act 
of February, 1 801, which Adams had signed but left undelivered in the 
executive offices. At his suggestion congress repealed this act in 
1802. On the other hand, Jefferson appointed his own followers, 
saying when as many republicans were in office as federalists he would 
continue the parity. 


Next, he turned to the national debt, which under the federalists 
had grown from $77,500,000 to $80,000,000. Jefferson was pledged 
to reduce it and gave Gallatin a free hand. That careful 
financier examined his resources and concluded that the ^.^^^^'P'^ 
debt could be paid in sixteen years. The revenue then poUcy. 
yielded $10,600,000 a year, of which $4,500,000 went for 
interest, $5,500,000 for army and navy, and the rest for general ex- 
penses. Gallatin proposed to pay $7,300,000 a year for interest and 
to curtail the debt, and as the ordinary expenses could not well be 
lessened he would effect most of the saving by reducing the army and 
nax'y. At the outset he encountered a difficulty in the loss of $650,000 
of the levenue, because the repubhcans were pledged to abolish 
internal revenue duties. Thus it happened that he had but $2,650,000 
for the support of army, navy, and the civil establishment. This 
sum he divided with the greatest care. To the army he allowed 
$930,000, to the navy $670,000, which left $1,050,000 for ordinary 
expenses. This made it necessary to reduce the army to a mere 
handful and to tie up in the dockyards most of the ships of the navy. 
Jefferson was pleased. He did not like a standing army, and con- 
sidered a navy a useless toy which, as he said, might well 
be assembled in the eastern branch of the Potomac, where J^ff^rson 
the ships "would require but one set of plunderers to take Navy, 
care of them." Many congressmen winced under Gal- 
latin's economy ; but he was inexorable, Jefferson supported him, and 
the plan was adopted. 

The result justified Gallatin's hopes. At the end of a year the 
revenue was nearly $3,000,000 more than he had expected, which gave 
him a comfortable surplus. In 1803 we purchased Louisi- 
ana, paying $1 1,250,000 in bonds and $4,000,000 for claims Gallatin's 
(see page 299). Gallatin announced that he could pay the mg^t 
latter out of the surplus and that the new bonds would 
postpone the payment of the debt only eighteen months. In 1804 
congress ordered the construction of a frigate to replace the Phila- 
delphia, lost at Tripoli (see page 296), and all eyes turned to Gallatin 
for the money. He would not take from the funds set aside for the 
debt, and congress had to lay a special duty, the "Mediterranean 
Fund." In 1805 the revenues rose to $14,000,000, and in 1806 to 
$14,500,000, yielding a surplus of $6,000,000. Many congressmen 
thought the time for economy was now past, but Gallatin and Jef- 
ferson urged patience, promising if the policy of economy were fol- 
lowed for two years longer there would be an ample reserve and at least 
$5,000,000 for such uses as congress might deem fit. 1807 was another 
fat year, and the surplus was now $7,600,000, and the debt, including 
the bonds paid for Louisiana, had been reduced from $92,000,000 to 
$69,500,000. In 1808 the embargo was in force, revenues fell off, 
and this splendid progress was halted. 


Gallatin's financial policy pleased the mass of thrifty people. It 
was that of the careful husbandman, who, finding himself overwhelmed 

with debt, sets aside from his annual income a sum neces- 
Gallatin and g^j.y ^-^j liquidate his obligations within a reasonable time 
Contrasted. ^"^^ rigidly reduces expenditures accordingly. It looked 

to the ultimate extinction of the debt, on the principle 
that freedom from debt is as good for a nation as for an individual. 
In contrast with it was the policy of Hamilton, who thought little of 
pajdng the debt and much of making the nation strong enough to 
weather financial storms. He would have a navy to protect commerce, 
which would increase the revenues, manufactures to build up the 
industrial efficiency of the country, and a strong capitalist class to 
promote the development of the nation's resources. He looked 
farther into the future than Gallatin, but he did not appreciate so 
well the desires of the average citizen. 

Jefferson's first term saw a remarkable and probably an unexpected 
development of the power of the federal courts. Asserting the right 

to interpret the constitution, they began to declare null 
TheRepub- j-j^^g both of congress and the state legislatures (see page 
beans an 357). As the judges were federalists, it seemed that the 
ciary. opposition, ensconced in this seat of power, were defeating 

the will of the people expressed in the elections. The case 
seemed more difficult, because the constitution alTorded no other way 
of removing a judge than impeachment, which must be for "treason, 
bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors." But if the senate, 
as a court of impeachment, chose to consider partisanship in a judge 
a misdemeanor, no power could gainsay them. So clear was this that 
the republicans determined to proceed, believing that if they estab- 
lished the principle that the senate could remove the judges, future 
partisanship in that quarter would be avoided. 

The first case was that of Pickering, judge of a district court in New 
Hampshire, a man whose inebriety had led to insanity. He was 
impeached and removed from office in 1803, and the people approved, 
although it seemed singular that insanity was pronounced a mis- 
demeanor by the highest court in the land. Then the republicans 
turned to Judge Samuel Chase, of the supreme court. He was a 
violent partisan, as his conduct in the cases under the alien and sedi- 
tion laws in 1800 showed. He expressed his views openly, and in 
1803 declared to a federal grand jury in Baltimore that the republicans 
threatened the country with mob rule. At this the house impeached 
him, and the senate sat as a tribunal. John Randolph, an able but 
erratic Virginian, was chief prosecutor on behalf of the house. He 
included so many charges besides partisanship that opinion rallied to 
Chase and the impeachment failed. It was believed that a contrary 
verdict would have been followed by the impeachment of Marshall. 
As it was, the republican attack on the courts was checked, and the 


chief justice remained in a position to exert a powerful influence 
upon the development of constitutional law. 

The War with Tripoli 

For many years Morocco, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli laid tribute 
on trade in the Mediterranean, and the powers of Europe acquiesced. 
After the revolution our ships began, also, to be seized, 
and we were forced to buy treaties with handsome presents ^11"^^^° 
of arms and money. First and last we paid enough 
money in this way to build several excellent ships, but for all that 
the freebooters were not satisfied. In 1801 the pacha of Tripoli cut 
down the flagstaff of our consulate as a declaration of war, because 
Tunis received richer presents than Tripoli ; and about the same 
time Algiers showed symptoms of ill will. Jefferson desired peace, 
because, like Washington in 1795, he felt we were not strong 
enough to make war on a great power. But this policy did not apply 
to Tripoli, and early in 1801 he sent Captain Dale with four ships, the 
President, Philadelphia, and Essex, frigates, and the Enterprise, a 
sloop of war, to teach the Barbary States to respect us. 

Dale could not attempt land operations, and when the Tripolitans 
collected an army and drew their navy up under the guns of their forti- 
fications, he could only establish a blockade and cruise 
along the coast. Fortune, however, threw in his way an operations 
enemy's cruiser, which was quickly taken. Because 
congress had not declared war, Jefferson had not authorized captures, 
and the conquered ship, disarmed and dismantled, was allowed to 
escape to Tripoli, where her crew told such stories of American ferocity 
that the pacha's soldiers were filled with a respectful terror. In 1802 a 
second squadron went to the Mediterranean, but did nothing effective. 
These meager results disappointed the people at home, and the com- 
mander. Captain Morris, was dismissed the service. In 1803 a third 
commander of squadron went out. Captain Preble. With the aid of 
some small boats borrowed from the king of Sicily, who was also at 
war with the pacha, he conducted a bombardment of the city of 
Tripoli, but inflicted little damage. Preble remained in the Mediter- 
ranean during the winter, and showed a determination to isolate the 
enemy completely. In the spring of 1804 he received important 
cooperation from William Eaton, an eccentric but patriotic American 
in Egypt, who, without authority from his government, sought Hamet, 
dispossessed elder brother of the pacha, and set out from Egypt to 
capture the government of Tripoli by land. The pacha ^ , , . 
was a usurper and yielded rather than endanger tran- ^^^^ 
quillity at home, although the army of Eaton and Hamet 
was only 500 men. In 1805, when the eastern half of his kingdom 
had been won over, he concluded a treaty, retaining his throne, but 


agreeing to remain at peace with the United States in the future with- 
out tribute, and to surrender all Americans held in his country. 
Nothing was done in behalf of Hamet, who was now forced to retire 
from the positions he had won, but the next year we allowed him a life 
pension of $200 a month. 

The war with Tripoli had a wholesome effect on the other Barbary 
States, and they were content to remain at peace without further 
presents. It also gave the na\y exercise in a theater of 
thTwar' actual war, and brought it added prestige at home and 
abroad. It contained incidents of heroism which fired the 
American imagination. Two of them especially were long remem- 
bered. While Preble held Tripoli closely invested from the sea he 
sent Lieutenant Somers among the enemy's ships in the 
Somer° ketch Intrepid, loaded with bombs and powder, to explode 
it in their midst and escape if possible. The American 
ships waited at a distance for the return of the brave crew. After 
a time they saw the ketch blow up when in contact with the Tripoli- 
tans, but neither Somers nor his men came back. Their fate was not 
known, but it was believed that he leaped into the magazine with a 
lighted torch, devoting himself to death to accomplish the object for 
which he was sent out. 

The other adventure was more successful. The PliUadelphia, 
pursuing the enemy too eagerly, went aground at the mouth of the har- 
bor of Tripoli, and Bainbridge and his crew were taken. 
deiphia ' "' Shortly afterwards the ship was floated by the enemy and 
taken under the protection of their guns, where she 
frowned unpleasantly at the Americans in the offing. Stephen Deca- 
tur, commanding a ketch, sailed boldly into the harbor, boarded the 
Philadelphia, filled her with combustibles, set her on fire, and escaped 
in his ketch through a shower of badly aimed shots from land batteries 
and the ships in the harbor. He was a cool and capable officer, and 
was promoted for his conduct. In 181 5 he returned to the Mediter- 
ranean with a formidable squadron and dictated favorable treaties 
with the Barbary States at the mouth of the cannon. 

The Purchase of Louisiana 

In 1800 most Americans believed that the settlement of the eastern 
half of the Mississippi basin would inevitably be followed by the 

acquisition of the western half. Acute alarm was occa- 
The im- sioned in Washington's administration when it was 
Louisiana. thought England was about to get a foothold in this 

region ; for while no one feared Spain's control of the 
region in question, England's ownership was another matter. For- 
tunately, the danger soon passed, but apprehension was again aroused 
when in the spring of 1801 it began to be reported that Spain had 


transferred Louisiana to the powerful and aggressive Napoleon, who 
intended to build up a vast colonial power in its borders. The rumor 
soon became a certainty, but as rr.onths passed and the province 
remained in the hands of Spain the public mind remained calm. 
Late in 1802 it was violently agitated when news came that the 
Spanish governor in New Orleans had withdrawn the right of deposit 
granted in the treaty of 1795. The public construed this as a change 
of policy in anticipation of the new regime in Louisiana, and the West 
was for seizing the mouth of the river before it was too late. Jefferson 
wisely thought the action of the governor unauthorized, 
and restrained the popular wrath while he negotiated. j)g^„Qg°i 
Five months later he was informed by the Spanish minister 
that the right of deposit would be restored, and this removed the 
question from the range of possible war and left it freely in the field 
of diplomacy. 

It was the president's plan to impress France with our seriousness 
in the matter, and to that end he used the strongest language. Let 
France know, he said, that the nation which held the mouth 
of the Mississippi was our enemy, and if Napoleon per- j^i^^iq^^^ 
sisted in his purpose we should "marry ourselves to the 
British fleet and nation," so that England and the United States, 
cooperating for supremacy at sea, would hold at their mercy the 
revived French colonial establishment. He let the British minister 
see what he meant, and at a dinner paid him such marked attention 
that the French minister made it a subject of comment in his letter to 
Talleyrand. Generally speaking, Jefferson was pacific, not because 
of cowardice, as his enemies thought, but because he abhorred war 
and thought it was usually undertaken through unreasonable impulse. 
His vigorous attitude toward France shows how positive he could be 
when he considered a vital issue at stake. Meanwhile, Livingston, 
our minister in Paris, was instructed to sound Napoleon in regard to 
the purchase of the Isle of Orleans and West Florida. It is not 
probable that Jefferson thought the proposition would succeed, but 
it offered a point of departure in the negotiation. 

Unknown to him, events in Paris were shaping themselves more 
favorably than he dared hope ; and to understand them we must go 
back to the treaty of San Ildefonso, October i, 1800. By 
that agreement Napoleon induced Spain to transfer P^^Jf^"^ 
Louisiana to him in exchange for the Grand Duchy of fonso. 
Tuscany, which, elevated to the kingdom of Etruria, was 
to be given to the Duke of Parma, son-in-law of the king of Spain, 
when a general peace was made in Europe. Napoleon promised not 
to sell the territory thus acquired to any nation but Spain, and it was 
agreed that later negotiations should be entered into for the cession of 
West Florida. The treaty was kept secret for the time being, but its 
essential features were soon known. This vast acquisition of land 


was to be the basis of a revived colonial empire, which the rising 
Napoleon thought would increase his popularity with the glory-loving 
French people. 

Before that scheme could be realized the island of Santo Domingo 
must be conquered. Here Toussaint L'Ouverture, at the head of an 

army of blacks, was fighting to maintain the power he had 
Toussaint founded. Every step he took in the progress of military 

despotism seemed but a shadow of the course of a greater 
despot in France. The world took notice and smiled, whereat Na- 
poleon, deeply irritated, felt the greater need of suppressing the man 
who made him ridiculous while he defied French authority. In 
February, 1801, Napoleon made the treaty of Luneville and was at 
peace with the continent. England continued the war with little 
heart, and brought it to an end a year later in the treaty of Amiens. 
This period of victory offered the triumphant First Consul the op- 
portunity to bring Santo Domingo back to obedience. 

January, 1802, arrived in Santo Domingo Leclerc, one of the best 
French generals, with an army of 10,000, and the war of reconquest 

began. Toussaint wished to use guerilla methods, but his 
Toussaint officers overruled him. After three months of struggle 

they began to yield to the blandishments of Leclerc, think- 
ing that it booted little to suffer further in behalf of the black emperor. 
At last Toussaint himself ventured to surrender, being assured of 
personal safety. After six weeks of fancied security he was arrested, 
sent to France according to the orders of Napoleon, and in less than a 
year died in a fortress in the Jura Mountains. Then Napoleon sent 
an order to restore slavery, his intention from the beginning. But 
for that, he might have ruled the island and proceeded with his colonial 
plans in Louisiana. As it was, the negro laborers rose to a man. Tous- 
saint's officers were true to Leclerc, but all the efforts of the combined 

white and black forces did not check the onslaughts of the 
De^feated maddened laborers who saw slavery restored in the neigh- 
boring island of Guadeloupe. Then yellow fever appeared. 
In three months 24,000 men, soldiers and sailors, had died, and Leclerc 
demanded 17,000 more, with avast sum of money, before the work of 
subjugation was done. He announced that this could only be done 
by killing over half the lower classes, male and female, above twelve 
years of age ; and he thought that peace once restored, annual revolts 
might be looked for in the future. Before such a stupendous under- 
taking even Napoleon's resolution quailed, and it was decided to 
abandon the island. 

Louisiana was now useless to Napoleon, and although 
Purchased ^^ ^^^ assured Spain he would not sell it, he looked 

around for a buyer. April 10, 1803, he told Marbois, 
head of the treasury, to see if the United States would entertain 
an offer to buy. The shrewd Talleyrand, scenting an opportunity for 


profit, anticipated Marbois, and the following day opened the matter 
with Livingston, our minister. The two were discussing the purchase 
of the Isle of Orleans when Talleyrand said, "What would you give 
for all Louisiana?" The suggestion was unexpected, but Livingston 
concealed his eagerness, and said that as he expected a special envoy 
from the United States in two days, he wished the matter to be 
deferred that long. The envoy was Monroe, whom Jefferson had sent 
to try to purchase the Isle of Orleans and West Florida. On the thir- 
teenth Marbois and Livingston talked until midnight about the affair, 
the former inquiring if we would pay 60,000,000 francs in cash and 
also assume claims of Americans against France worth 20,000,000 
francs. Livingston said this was too much, but he felt inwardly that it 
was a good bargain, and after some haggling the purchase was made on 
that basis. The treaty was signed on May 2, although it was ante- 
dated to April 30. It increased the national domain by 140 per cent. 

The transaction pleased Jefferson, but also alarmed him. A strict 
constructionist, he could find no authority in the constitution for 
purchasing foreign territory, and he began to prepare 
an amendment granting congress the right. He seems to r f-g I**^ 
have forgotten this when he proposed to buy the Isle of 
Orleans. An intimation from Paris that Napoleon might change his 
mind before an amendment could be adopted caused the president 
to abandon his plan, and the treaty was duly ratified October 21, 
1803. December 20, to the gratification of every American in the 
Mississippi valley, the stars and stripes was hoisted over New Orleans. 

Now arose the cjuestion of boundaries. According to the treaty we 
received "the colony or province of Louisiana, with the same extent 
that it now has in the hands of Spain, and that it had when 
France possessed it, and such as it should be after the ^o^^siana's 
treaties subsequently entered into between Spain and 
other states." The words were from the treaty of 1800. Livingston 
asked Talleyrand what they meant. " I do not know," was the re- 
ply, "you must take it as we received it." "But what did you mean 
to take?" said Livingston, to which the astute Frenchman again 
said, "I do not know," adding, "You have made a noble bargain for 
yourselves, and I suppose you will make the most of it." At that 
time Talleyrand had in his cabinet a copy of the instructions designed 
for Victor, who was to have been the first French governor of Louisi- 
ana, informing him that the boundary on the west was the Rio Grande, 
and on the east the river Iberville, i.e. the eastern border of the Isle of 
Orleans. This was quite definite, but it was unknown to Jefferson for 
some time, and meanwhile he adopted a theory worthy of Talleyrand 

Before 1762 Louisiana extended to the Perdido, including Mobile, 
which as the outlet of a river system reaching from Georgia to Missis- 
sippi was greatly desired by the United States. Jefferson saw in the 


words of the treaty, "that it had when France possessed it," an op- 
portunity to claim this part of what he must have known was un- 
doubtedly West Florida, i.e. Spanish territory, and, in 
How Jeffer- Talleyrand's words, he "made the most of it." He com- 
j°° * ^ municated his opinion to congress, which accepted it, and 
passed. February, 1804, the Mobile act, erecting the region 
in question into a customs district and annexing it to Mississippi terri- 
tory. Lest this lead to war with Spain, Jefferson tactfully located 
the customs house for the new district north of the Florida line. His 
plan was to hold the dispute in abeyance until Spain was in a war, 
and then seize the desired district. The Southwest, to whom the 
Coosa-Alabama line of river communication was of the utmost impor- 
tance, approved his plan, and thought nothing of the points of national 
honor involved. But Jefferson did not trust entirely to the prospect 
of war. He would use it, if possible, as a means of forcing Spain to 
withdraw, and to that end he hoped to enlist the efforts of Napoleon, 
whose influence in Madrid was all but supreme. The French emperor 
understood this game and skillfully turned it against the American 
president by holding out West Florida when he wished the good will 
of Jefferson, and by withdrawing it when his temporary purpose was 
accomplished. ii*^^. 

Dissension in th^ REFtfrn^iCAN Party 

By the beginning of 1804 Jefferson s popularity was well established. 
None of the calamities prophesied by the federalists had followed 

his election. On the contrary, the debt was being paid 
S ccess"* through Gallatin's wise economy, Louisiana had been 

acquired, party rancor was dying, business was prosperous, 
and the president manifested a desire to conciliate all sections and 
interests. It was also evident that Jefferson directed his party with a 
strong hand. He early recognized Burr as a disturbing element and 
proceeded to crush him. The character of the New Yorker would 
have justified this, to say nothing of his intrigue for the presidency in 
1 80 1. Burr was attacked through the New York patronage, which 

was sedulously given to Clinton, his bitter enemy. The 
His Attitude vice-president was the least submissive of men, and now 
toward Burr, began to lean toward the federalists, and this only increased 

the difference between him and his party. Finally, he 
fell into the net of Pickering and the extreme New England federalists. 
They were so bitter against Jefferson that they planned to carry their 
section out of the union before his insidious conciliation should warp 
it out of their hands. It was an erratic scheme, and probably would 
have been rejected by the people, but the schemers decided to make 
the attempt if New York, the great commercial state of the North, 
could be induced to join them. To that end they approached Hamil- 


ton, who rejected their proposals. Then they turned to Burr, who 
was complaisant. They got him accepted as federalist candidate 
for governor in the spring of 1804, thinking that his own ^ 

friends and the federalists would elect him. But now ^hdmed.'^' 
Hamilton exerted himself, and defeated Burr at the polls 
by disclosing the object for which he had been nominated. This 
angered the discredited man, and the result was the duel on July 11, 
1S04, in which Hamilton was killed and Burr's political influence 
blasted. Jefferson in national affairs and Clinton in state affairs 
reaped the fruits of that foolish crime. 

A more serious party disturbance came through the opposition of 
John Randolph, a vehement and caustic speaker against whom few 
members of congress could stand in debate. As chairman 
of the ways and means committee in the house he was a Randolph. 
chief exponent of the administration policy. His lofty 
manner offended many republicans, particularly the men from the 
North, for whom he openly expressed contempt. His ideas were not 
always practical, and Jefferson in a quiet way began to oppose the 
most impossible of them. Randolph then struck back, the oc- 
casion being the Yazoo claims, whose origin goes back to Washing- 
ton's administration. 

After the revolution Georgia claimed the lands to the Mississippi 
by a title formally as good as that by which the other states claimed 
their Western lands. She also held that the region involved 
in the secret clause of the treaty of 1782 should come to her companies. 
because it was originally a part of her domain. The 
United States might well dispute the latter claim, but left it in abeyance, 
hoping that all the region would soon be transferred to the federal 
government. But Georgia wished to realize on the lands, and by 
several grants sold them to great land companies, known as Yazoo 
companies. The last of these grants, including the others, was made 
in 1795 at about a cent and a half an acre. The sale was made by a 
corrupt legislature, and the next legislature declared it null. Now 
resulted a pretty piece of confusion, in which the Yazoo lands were 
claimed by Georgia, the United States, since most of them were in the 
disputed region, and the grantees, who held that a state could not 
annul a grant for the corruption of its own agents. Georgia was 
deiiant, and as President Adams did not wish to coerce a state, a 
compromise was arranged by which Georgia relinquished the lands to 
the federal government, which undertook to erect them into Missis- 
sippi Territory, and to pay damages to Georgia and the 

'^^^ . >. . . -^ • i J r .1 I t4. Compromise 

companies. Commissions were appointed tor tne latter proposed. 

purpose, and reported among other things that the United 
States should pay Georgia $1,250,000, and the grantees the proceeds 
of the sale of 5,000,000 acres of land. In 1803 a bill was before con- 
gress to put this compromise into effect. 


It was at this point that Randolph opened his attack on the admin- 
istration. He disliked Madison greatly, thinking him a trimmer. 
Most of the Yazoo stock was owned by speculators living in the 

North, and the representatives in congress, from that 
Randolph section, republican and federalist, were anxious to pass 
and t e ^ ^^^ |^|jj^ Jefferson favored it, probably because he wished 
promise. to build up his party in the North. All this aroused the 

suspicion of Randolph. He made no objection to reim- 
bursing Georgia for her claim, but he denounced the project to pay the 
companies. His scathing words defeated the bill at that time, but it 
came up again in 1805, when the speculators employed Granger, 
postmaster-general, to lobby for the measure. This angered the sharp- 
tongued Randolph, whose bitter strictures were now thrust at the 
administration which harbored the lobbyist. The republicans were 
divided into Yazoo and Anti-Yazoo men, the latter being chiefly 
Southerners. They were nearly equally divided, and Randolph was 
able to defeat the bill at this time. Although taken up again from time 
to time, it was not passed. In 1810, in the case of Fletcher vs. Peck, 
the supreme court held that the Georgia grant of 1795 was a contract, 
and that the legislature of 1796 could not annul it, and this strength- 
ened the cause of the Yazoo men. In 1814, when Ran- 
End of the do^ph was no longer a member of congress, it was voted 
troversy. ^o give the company $8,000,000 in settlement of the 

claims, and with this the matter came to an end. 
At first Jefferson kept himself clear of the dispute, and he was too 
strong to be openly attacked. In 1804 he was reelected president 

by 162 to 14 electoral votes, getting all the votes of New 
ReSt°e°d England but Connecticut's. For the support of New York, 

Clinton received the vice-presidency. Jefferson, at the 
height of his glory, announced in 1805 that he would not be a candi- 
date for another term, and it was generally thought he would 
make Madison his successor. Randolph and his friends began to 
make plans to support Monroe, who had acted with them. While 
the breach in the party was thus widened, Jefferson brought before 
congress a scheme to acquire Florida, which gave Randolph another 
opportunity to show hostility to the president. 

While Jefferson deferred occupation of West Florida to a more 
favorable time, he renewed diplomatic efforts to get Spain to yield 

what we wished ; but to his overtures the king returned a 
Jefferson's haughty refusal. In 1805 Talleyrand entered into the 
Acquiring affair, communicating an informal suggestion that we 
Florida. trust Napoleon to conduct negotiations for the purchase 

of all Florida for $7,000,000. He meant that the money 
sent to Madrid should find its way into the French treasury to pay 
subsidies which Napoleon exacted from prostrate Spain. The sug- 
gestion pleased Jefferson, although he hoped to get the Floridas for 


Jess than the price named, and December 5, 1805, he sent a secret 
message to congress asking for authority to offer $2,000,000. Ran- 
dolph, chairman of the ways and means committee, was the man to 
move a grant ; but he was obdurate. His influence with the com- 
mittee was great, and he induced them to report in favor of measures 
of defense, saying he would never vote a penny to buy territory which 
we justly owned. The house overrode him, voting after a long debate, 
72 to 58, that the money be placed at the president's disposal. But 
so much time was consumed in discussion that the opportunity 
was lost. When the suggestion was made, Napoleon needed 
money. Within four months he won the victories of Ulm and Aus- 
terlitz and dictated the treaty of Pressburg, and his coffers were 
overflowing. He accordingly refused to bring pressure to bear on 

From that time, 1806, Randolph was in open opposition. Now 
came an unexpected development. His followers would support him 
when he appeared as a mere critic of one of the administra- 
tion measures, but when he was an acknowledged insur- cf^^"'^^- 
gent they began to fall away, fearing the power and strength, 
popularity of Jefferson. Of the ablest and truest were 
Nicholson, of Maryland, Macon, of North Carolina, the speaker, and 
Monroe. Jefferson sought to detach them from their leader, and 
succeeded with the first by appointing him a federal judge. The 
second remained unmoved, but the congress elected in 1806 was against 
Randolph, and Macon was not reelected speaker. His defeat insured 
a new chairman of the ways and means committee. Monroe acted with 
Randolph until the election of 1808 elevated Madison, Jefferson's 
choice, to the president's chair. In 1809 an arrangement was made, 
through Jefferson's aid, to make Monroe secretary of state under 
Madison, an agreement consummated in 181 1. Randolph, shorn of 
his strength, continued to annoy Jefferson. In the house none dared 
encounter his withering scorn, and he had his way in debate. The 
president wisely ignored the attacks, although he probably winced 
in secret under them. The retirement of the annoyer in 1813 to make 
place for Jefferson's son-in-law, Eppes, only interrupted Randolph's 
career. He was reelected in 1814, and with a short interruption served 
in congress until 1829, an able but eccentric free lance and sometimes 
a nuisance. 

The Schemes of Aaron Burr 

When Burr saw his career ended in the East he turned to the West. 
Had he settled in New Orleans, or some other city in which a duelist 
was not unpopular, he might have risen to professional 
and political prominence. But his ambition looked to totheWest. 
larger things, and he wished to found a state of his own in 
the West. For such an adventure he had genius in leadership, but he 


lacked men and money. The first he hoped to get in the West and the 
latter from either England or Spain. 

Historians are not agreed on the nature of his plans. He was 
indicted for treason in that he attempted to wrench Louisiana from 

the union and set it up as an independent state. Most of 
Was Burr s j^jg contemporaries beheved him guilty as charged, and 
Loiiisiana? some living historians accept the same view. According 

to them he was to collect looo men on the Ohio, reach 
Lcuisiana about the time the territorial legislature declared the 
province independent, and with the connivance of General Wilkinson, 
commanding the union forces there, establish his supremacy. It is 
known that he tried to get money for this purpose from the English 
minister and failed, and that he then tried to get it from Spain, where 
he also failed. He promised England to place his new state under 
English protection, thus opening a vast field for British commerce. 
He told Spain that his state would present a useful barrier between 
the United States and Mexico, then in Spanish hands. It is also 
known that he was in close conference wifh Wilkinson, who was cap- 
able of any treachery. 

The other contention is that his real purpose was to conduct, in 
cooperation with a band of New Orleans adventureres, a filibustering 
Q . expedition against Vera Cruz and Mexico City. He did, 

unquestionably, tell some of his followers this was his 
object, and he had maps and other information about Mexico which 
seemed to substantiate his words. He revealed this plan to some of the 
most influential leaders of the West, Andrew Jackson among others, 
and won their approval ; for Spain was much hated in this quarter. 
To the plainer people of the West he spoke of a colony on the Red 
river, where he had acquired a large land grant, but this was ad- 
mittedly a subterfuge. The real controversy is as to whether his 
conspiracy was aimed at Louisiana or Mexico.^ If it was at the former. 
Burr lied when he spoke of the latter ; if at the latter, he Hed when he 
spoke of the former. Probably we shall never know in what respect 
he told the truth. Wilkinson testified that the conspiracy was 
against Louisiana; but Wilkinson's word is not ordinarily to be 
taken. He was a pensioner of Spain, and was concerned in most of the 
plans to separate the Mississippi valley from the United States. 
Wilkinson shared whatever guilt Burr incurred, and he was talking 
to clear himself ; but this was true of some of those who testified that 
Mexico was the objective. It must be remembered, also, that it is 
possible that Burr meant to do both of the things alleged. It was quite 
within the power of his audacious imagination to hope to secure 
Louisiana first and then operate against Vera Cruz. 

>For the view that Louisiana was Burr's objective the best authority is Henry Adams, 
History of the United States, III, chs. 10-14. For the other view see McCaleb, The Aaron 
Burr Conspiracy. 


Be this as it may, Burr gave himself earnestly to his scheme, going 
hither and thither in the West, collecting boats, supplies, and men at 
Blennerhassett Island, near Parkersburg, West Virginia. _. «, . 
November 15, 1806, was the date set for their departure, paj^g/ *™* 
Rumor was rife all through the West that he would attack 
New Orleans, and in October, he was indicted for treason in Kentucky. 
As no positive evidence could be adduced he was acquitted, and con- 
tinued his preparations. But the indictment checked volunteering, 
and he could not set out on the appointed day. It was an untoward 
event ; for at New Orleans the situation favored success, if Burr had 
designs there. The legislature was about to meet, and Wilkinson had 
taken his army to the Texan frontier, leaving the city unprotected. 
If the adventurer had appeared with 1000 men, as he promised, the 
city would have been at his mercy. But the men were wanting, and 
Wilkinson, able to take care of himself in an emergency, decided to 
desert a failing cause. He informed Jefferson of a conspiracy to seize 
Louisiana, but concealed his connection with it. He hastened to. the 
city and noisily gave orders to make the place safe against assault. 
The president, meanwhile, received Wilkinson's letter. He had heard 
rumors against Burr before that, but took no action, lest friends of the 
accused charge him with persecuting a political rival. But now the 
charges were definite, and he sent a proclamation through the West 
for the arrest of all conspirators. Burr's friends warned him that 
it was coming, and hastily gathering all his resources, sixty men and 
thirteen flatboats, he set off for New Orleans in the last days of the 
year. He still counted on Wilkinson, but when he learned at Natchez 
how vain was this reliance he abandoned his followers to 
their fate, and, disguised, sought to escape through the ^^^j. 
forest to West Florida. At Fort Stoddert, when nearly 
across the boundary, he was recognized, arrested, and sent to Rich- 
mond, Virginia, for trial. 

The case aroused wide interest. Chief Justice Marshall presided 
at the hearing and John Randolph was foreman of the grand jury 
which presented Burr for trial. Both men were bitter g^j.j..g jj.j^j 
enemies of Jefferson, and seemed to wish Burr's acquittal. 
By the constitution, treason is levying war against the government, or 
giving aid and comfort to the enemy, and two witnesses to the same 
overt act are necessary for conviction. Marshall ruled that a man 
must be present when the overt act was committed in order to be 
guilty of treason within the meaning of the constitution. As Burr 
was in Kentucky when his followers assembled on the Ohio river, he 
was not guilty as charged, although it was well known that he planned 
the whole movement. The ruling was fatal to the prosecution, and 
Burr was acquitted. Luther Martin, leading lawyer for Burr and long 
an enemy of Jefferson, outdid himself in making it uncomfortable for 
the president. One expedient was to summon Jefferson to testify 


and to bring certain papers with him. The summons was disregarded 
on the ground that the president was not to be at the command of 

the federal courts. Marshall was a bold judge strugghng 
Clash be- to establish the independent power of the judiciary, and 
tween the jj^ j-j^jg rotable case, in which the executive appeared as 
and*the^^ prosecutor, he went as far as he dared go in his attempt to 
Judiciary. make the president do the will of the court. In refusing 

this subpoena, Jefferson, as Adams in the case of Dr. 
Cooper, 1800, and other presidents at later times, laid out the line 
beyond which the court was not to go. 

Relations between England and the United States 

When Burr took up his Western schemes, England and Napoleon 

were joined in the final struggle to determine the destiny of Europe. 

Each striving to cripple the resources of the other came at 

America length to attempts to restrain the trade of neutrals. As 

rv^*-^„ Napoleon after 1806 was dominant on the continent from 

Carrying iai-- i-ni-i i- 

Trade. the Adriatic to the Baltic, the only important neutral 

was the United States, whose citizens for a time reaped 
large profits from the sale of American products and by carrying 
freights between European ports. American ships were rapidly 
built, and foreign ships were transferred to American registry, to the 
discomfiture of British owners, whose own profits were lessened by the 
high insurance they must pay in the dangerous days of French licensed 
privateers. The mobile sailor population of the world was also drawn 
into the American service, so that not only the British merchant 

marine but the British naval ships also suffered for lack 
Trade Re- Qf service. Out of this situation grew regulations to im- 
and^im"^ pede the American neutral trade, and a greater activity in 
pressments. impressing sailors on American ships. The weakness of 

the American navy, under Jefferson's pacific policy, 
invited these discriminations. 

Impressment rested on inalienable citizenship, held at the time 
by all the nations of Europe. America, as a new country, held for 

transferable citizenship, and the naturalization laws of 
lS°rest-°^ the United States were framed on that basis. But in 
ment. actual practice neither party to the controversy confined 

itself strictly to the principle at stake. Sailors on British 
ships frequently deserted in American ports, took out naturalization 
papers, and shipped on American vessels without much concealment 
and with open approval of the American population. Such duplicity 
was not to be endured by the mistress of the sea. British ships-of-war 
retaliated by boarding American vessels, mustering the crews on deck, 
and taking off all whom they chose to declare British subjects. Some- 
times they took men who were undoubtedly American born. Some- 


times, also, the men they took had forged papers certifying to American 
birth. Between these difficulties the ways of Presidents Jefiferson and 
Madison were hard. Impressment was practiced under the federalist 
presidents, and much negotiation occurred to remedy it, but no results 
were reached. It recurred with increased energy under Jefferson. 
Each instance of this wrong announced in the American papers aroused 
the popular wrath and prepared the way to the war of 181 2. When 
finally the British ships cruised off the American harbors searching all 
vessels that came out or went in, it was hard for the president to 
restrain the people from acts which must have led to hostilities. 

Less irritating, perhaps, but of greater real hardship, was the in- 
creasing number of seizures of ships charged with violating British 
rules of war. Of these regulations the most noted was 
the Rule of War of 1756, declaring that a trade not open p^^^°^^^^ 
in peace could not lawfully be opened in time of war. " ^' 
The dispute, as we have seen, came up in Washington's administration, 
but it was not settled. American skippers found a way around it by 
taking cargoes from the West Indies to their home ports, where the 
goods became American, and if reexported to Europe as such were 
not, as they held, liable to seizure. It was a nice point, but the British 
courts allowed it, the rule being laid down in the famous case of the 
Polly, 1800, that such goods became American goods and were not 
liable to capture if they were landed on American docks and paid 
American duties. For some time after the European war reopened, 
1803, this rule favored the Americans. So profitable was the trade 
that the expense of landing and paying duties was comparatively 
insignificant. Then came the complaint of British shippers that the 
Yankees used this as a subterfuge to engross all the trade of the 
French and Spanish possessions in America. The British government 
opened certain ports in their American colonies to the goods of enemy 
nations, with the hope that the trade drawn thither would 
go thence to England in British ships; but even this did ^^^° ® 
not break up the objectionable Yankee practice. Then 
came the decision of the British court in the case of the Essex, 1805, 
in which it was held that a neutral ship pleading the right accorded in 
the decision of the case of the Polly must prove that in landing her 
cargo in a neutral port it was the intention of the owners to make the 
cargo neutral goods and not merely to evade the rule of 1756. As 
this intention must be shown to the satisfaction of the British courts, 
proving it was difficult. Under the new rule, many ships were seized, 
and complaints were loud in America. In England the merchants 
applauded because insurance rates were now raised for their Yankee 
rivals, and the navy was pleased because officers shared in the prizes 

In 1806 died William Pitt, head of the ministry under which this 
severe policy was conducted. The changes which followed brought 


Charles James Fox, long a friend of America, into the foreign of- 
fice. He assured Monroe, our minister, that he would endeavor to 
have the recent restrictions modified, but warned him not 
ade ^8o6^ ' ^^ expect payment for the 500 prizes already taken. Even 
this concession was difficult to obtain ; for the cabinet 
as a whole dared not antagonize the merchants and navy by op^ly 
modifying their rules. Then Fox resorted to a subterfuge, known 
as "Fox's Blockade," May 16, 1806. A proclamation declared 
blockaded the coast of Europe from Brest to the Elbe, but the naval 
officers were instructed to enforce it only from the Seine to Ostend. 
Neutral ships, therefore, bound for posts between Brest and the Seine, 
and between Ostend and the Elbe, were allowed to go undisturbed, 
spite of the rules formerly enforced. It was a clumsy way of doing us 
a favor, but it left us the Netherlands with the Rhine valley and the 
northwest corner of France ; and it might have served until the end 
of the war had France acquiesced. 

But Napoleon scorned to get his foreign supplies through the con- 
nivance of his enemy. Feigning to believe Fox's Blockade effective 
for the whole coast line involved, he replied, November 21, 
The Berlin ^ g^^^^ with the Berlin Decree, declaring : i . Complete block- 
1806. ' ade for all the possessions of Britain in Europe; 2. All Brit- 

ish property, public or private, and any merchandise com- 
ing from Britain, whoever owned it, to be prize of war ; 3. No ship 
coming from Britain or her colonies to be admitted into a port con- 
trolled by France, and 4. Confiscation for vessels trying to evade this 
blockade by false papers. This outrageous decree, for which Fox's 
proclamation was no justification, ignored the doctrine of contraband, 
and announced, in effect, that its author was greater than international 
law. Moreover, he had not a respectable squadron to enforce it. 
Only a few minor class ships-of-war were left to France after the battle 
of Trafalgar, 1805, and these, darting out of the protected harbors 
at the unprotected merchantmen, besides her privateers, were the 
only means of enforcing the blockade against the mistress of the seas. 
The only redeeming feature of the decree was that it was not enforced 
against the United States for nine months after promulgation. 

The decree was a challenge to England, and touched her pride. 
The reply of the ministry was two Orders in Council, which only in- 
creased the distress of the American shippers. The first, 
First and January 7, 1807, forbade neutrals to trade from port to 
Orders in P^""^ °^ France or her allies. It was a severe blow at our 
Council. skippers, who were accustomed to dispose of cargoes in 
various markets as prices favored. In April a new election 
gave the government a parliamentary majority of two hundred, mostly 
country squires chosen on the ground that the church was in danger. 
In the tory ministry which now came into power George Canning, 
sometimes coarse, sometimes clever, but always patriotic and able, 


was foreign secretary. November i, six weeks after Napoleon began 
to enforce his decree against our shipping, there appeared, in Great 
Britain, the second Order in Council. It forbade neutral trade with 
the entire coast of Europe from Trieste to Copenhagen, unless the 
neutral vessels concerned first entered and cleared from a British 
port under regulations to be afterwards announced. Canning thought 
France could not exist without American food products, and he ex- 
pected by this means to force her to take them by permission of 
Britain. But Napoleon did not yield readily. December 17 he issued 
the Milan Decree, ordering the seizure of every neutral 
ship which allowed herself to be searched by England, or The Milan 
which cleared from an English port. Beyond this was ^^^^ 
nothing that could distress our commerce. Any ship 
bound for Europe, except for Sweden, Russia, or the Turkish pos- 
sessions, was liable to capture by one side or the other. By the end 
of 1 807 our merchant marine, distressed on every side, was threatened 
with destruction, and loud complaints reached the administration by 
every ship from abroad. 

Jefferson's Reply to Europe 

Jefferson abhorred war as a means of settling disputes, and thought 
most questions could be settled by appeal to interest. Neither he 
nor the majority of his party thought the country able to . 
bear the burden of war. Like Washington, when he pg^ce. 
accepted the Jay treaty in 1795, they thought it better to 
bear the insult offered them than appeal to a course which would in- 
crease the national debt, involve great expense for a navy, and put in 
jeopardy the independence of the nation. Neither he nor his party 
lacked patriotism, but they represented the rural classes and did not 
feel the attacks on commerce as keenly as the merchants and ship- 
owners, chiefly federalists. All these considerations prompted the 
adoption of pacific means of defense. 

The first was the non-importation act of 1806, passed to force 
concessions from England. It provided that certain specified goods 
which could be produced in the United States or in other 
countries than England should not be imported from the ^Q^^^tio^ 
ports of Great Britain after November 25 following. The ^^^^ ig^g^ 
president did not favor the bill, but accepted it when the 
republicans made it a party measure. Randolph opposed it, declaring 
with his peculiar vehemence that we ought either to fight or submit 
to England. The act was to be followed by negotiations, and Monroe, 
minister to England, and William Pinkney, now sent thither as his 
colleague, were authorized to make a treaty which would rectify 
our wrongs. All this was a reply to the decision in the case of the 
Essex. The act did not go into effect until December 14, 1807. 


Fox died soon after Monroe and Pinkney began negotiations, and 
his successor was less friendly. They did the best they could, but got 
no concessions worthy of the name. The treaty they 
Futile signed in London, December 31, did not give up impress- 

M^nroe*and ^'^^^^' ^^^ insisted that West India products pay a duty of 
Pinkney. not less than 2 per cent before they be exported to Europe 
as American goods, and that European products pay not 
less than i per cent duty in American ports before being exported to 
the islands. It was to be inoperative unless we bound ourselves not 
to abide by Napoleon's Berlin Decree. Thus it seemed that England 
dictated our own taxes and that she was bent on driving us into war 
with France. Jefferson realized that the treaty would not be ratified, 
and would not submit it to the senate. He concealed its terms to pro- 
tect Monroe from the criticisms he believed it would bring down on the 
negotiators. It showed how futile were the non-importation act and 
the hopes from negotiation. 

Then Jefferson turned to the embargo, in an especial sense his own 
policy. He would keep American ships from the sea until the time of 
danger was past, avoid the irritating incidents which were 
The Em- Jij^gly to arouse the war spirit in his own people, and force 
England and France to yield in order to get our products. 
He would thus prove that war is unnecessary and that armies and 
navies are a useless burden. Congress gave its support, and Decem- 
ber 21, 1807, the embargo act was passed. It prohibited the depar- 
ture for a foreign port of any merchant vessel, except foreign vessels in 
ballast, and required vessels in the coasting trade to give heavy bonds 
to land their cargoes in the United States. The president was given 
discretionary power to modify the operation of the law in specific 
cases, but its duration was made indefinite. Peaceful coercion was 
an untried experiment of far-reaching eft'ects, yet it passed the two 
houses in four days and was a law before the people understood its 
significance. Congress accepted it on the authority of Jefferson at a 
time when it seemed that all other measures were futile. If successful, 
it would be a brilliant climax of a presidential career in which were 
such achievements as Gallatin's financial policy, the purchase of 
Louisiana, and the dissipation of partisan bitterness. 

The first attempts at enforcement showed that peaceful coercion 
was impracticable. Shipowners would not give up a trade which be- 
came more profitable as it became more dangerous. They 
Difficulty of hurriedly instructed their captains to avoid American ports 
«ie Em-^ and to continue in the carrying trade between foreign 
bargo. ports. Those whose ships remained at home in idle- 

ness complained loudly, and the law was evaded so 
much that two supplementary acts were soon passed to make it 
effective (January 8 and March 12). At first the farmers did not feel 
the embargo as the traders felt it; for the crops were sold when it 


passed. But by the end of summer it came home to them in lower 
prices. Products which in 1807 sold unusually high, on account of 
the war abroad, now sold unusually low because they could not be 
exported. The federalists made much of this discontent, and their 
course stimulated it, and thus encouraged evasions of the law. In 
the autumn two more enforcing acts were passed. Even a rowboat 
was now subject to the law, and collectors of the ports were given 
despotic powers over every ship that sailed. 

Such was the situation when the election of 1808 occurred. Madi- 
son was the administration candidate, C. C. Pinckney had the sup- 
port of the federalists, and John Randolph was rallying 
his friends for Monroe. The result was 122 electoral j8og'°°° 
votes for Madison, 47 for Pinckney, and none for Monroe. 
George Clinton, vvho also had 6 votes for president, was elected vice- 
president, although he had shown great uneasiness under the Virginia 
domination. All New England but Vermont was again in the federal- 
ist column, and for this change the embargo was responsible. In the 
house the federalists also gained strength, but their adversaries still 
held control. 

These events, and the increasing defiance of New England, which 
seemed ready to take arms if the embargo were strictly enforced, 
shook the determination of the republicans, and senti- 
ment for repeal began to develop in the party. Jefferson JL^^^g'^^ °* 
observed the trend with great disappointment. He had bargo. 
not lost faith in peaceful coercion as a theory, but he was 
forced to see that it could not be enforced unless the majority of the 
people believed in it, and he was at last brought to sign a bill to super- 
sede the embargo by the non-intercourse law of 1809. 

It decreed non-intercourse with England and France, Non-inter- 

course l^&.w 
leaving the president to suspend it for whichever of the ^f ^^^g 

two nations should first abandon her restrictions. Jeffer- 
son signed the bill in much bitterness of spirit, and a few days later 
retired from office. The new law left open the trade with every nation 
but England and France, and to these our products went 
indirectly. For one year this situation continued, the g-^^'^^'^'*.. 
government trying meantime to effect a settlement by ^^^^ ' ' 
negotiations. All was in vain, and May i, 1810, a third 
act concerning trade, known as "Macon's Bill No. 2," was passed. It 
repealed all restrictions on commerce with the two nations, but author- 
ized the president to reinstate them for one nation when the other 
repealed its offensive decrees or orders. It was a bid for relaxation, 
and if accepted by one power was likely to be accepted by the other. 
The result showed it to be as futile as the preceding measures. Our 
commerce was caught in a bitter conflict between two great states 
who would hardly stop cutting one another to pieces to secure the good 
will of the United States. Jefferson's embargo had important sig- 
nificance in the economic history of the time (see page 349). 



General Works. Besides the Histories by McMaster, Hildreth, Schouler, and 
Avery (see page 274), reference is made especially to Henry Adams, History of the 
United States of A merica during the Administrations of Jejferson and Madison, 9 vols. 
(1889-1891), a work unsurpassed for scholarship and clearness, rather extensive for 
the general reader, but a source of comfort to the student. It has the New England, 
though not the federalist, point of view, but honesty and good judgment are always 
evident. Volumes 1-4 deal with the years 1801-1809. A short work of much 
merit is Channing, The Jejfcrsonian System (1906). Hart, American History told 
bv Contemporaries, 4 vols. (1897-1909), is also useful. For sources, see as above. 
Gallatin's reports are full, and may be found in The American State Papers, 
Finance, I and II. As one proceeds in the story the volumes in the same series 
on Public Lands and Commerce and Navigation become additionally important. 

For writings and biographies of the prominent men of the time, see above, 
page 275. Other important biographies are: Dodd, Life of Nathaniel Macon 
(1903) ; and Battle, ed., Letters of Nathaniel Macon, John Steele, and William Barry 
Grove (Univ. of North Carolina Bulletins, No. II). On John Randolph two books 
are available, the first able but hostile, the second favorable but undiscriminating. 
They are : Adams, H., John Randolph (1884), and Garland, Life of John Randolph 
(1850). Adams, H., Life of Gallatin (1879), and Stevens, Albert Gallatin (1884), 
present in a convenient form the services of the secretary of the treasury in this 
period. For extended references on Jeflferson see Channing, The Jejersonian 
System, ^'j/^-i'jd. 

The Louisiana Purchase. The earliest considerable account is Barbe-Marbois, 
Histoire dc la Louisiane et de la Cession (1829, and an English translation in 1830). 
It was written by one of the negotiators, and defends the sale of the province. The 
documents on the American side are full and can be found in the American State 
Papers, Foreign, II and Public Lands, I. Later American accounts are : the chap- 
ters in Henry Adams, History of the United Slates, I and II ; Ogg, The Opening of the 
Mississippi (1904) ; and Gayarre, History of Louisiana, 4 vols, (revised edition, 1885). 

Burr's Scheme. The usual view that Burr wished to revolutionize Louisiana is 
best stated by Adams, History of the United States, III. The view that Mexico 
was Burr's objective is defended with ability in McCaleb, The Aaron Burr Con- 
spiracy (1903). The important documents are in Robertson, Report of the Trial 
of Colonel Aaron Burr, 2 vols. (1808), Trial of Colonel Aaron Burr, 3 vols. (1807- 
1808) ; Safford, The Blennerhassett Papers (1864), containing Blennerhassett's 
journal and correspondence with Burr ; Wilkinson, Memoirs of my Own Time, 3 vols. 
(1816), presents the author's side, but he is so much distrusted that even his cor- 
respondence is not to be accepted. 

Relations with England and France. On this subject Adams, History of the 
United States, IV, V, and VI, is very valuable. Many newly unearthed documents, 
American and foreign, are given at length, and the story is carried forward with 
spirit and breadth of treatment. The American State Papers, Foreign, II, contains 
valuable documents. Wheaton, The Life, Writings, and Speeches of William 
Pink>iey (1826), and Pinkney, The Life of William Pinkncy (1853), also contain 
valuable information. For a list of the important pamphlets which the contro- 
versy called forth, see Channing, The Jejfcrsonian System (1906), 283-285. Stu- 
dents interested in the subject should examine the writings of Madison, Monroe, 
Jefferson, and Gallatin (see above, page 255). 

For Independent Reading 

Maclay, History of the United States Navy, 3 vols. (1898) ; Spears, Story of the 
American Merchant Marine (1900), in which the conditions of the sea-born^ com- 
merce is well treated. Basil Hall, Voyages and Travels (1895), covering the years 
1802-1812, valuable for the experiences of British naval ships on the American 
station. Memoirs and Letters of Dolly Madison, Wife of James Madison (1SS6), 
interesting for social life in the early days in Washington. 


THE WAR OF 1812 

Origin of the War 

Both England and France seized American ships under the restric- 
tions on commerce just described, but as England had the stronger 
navy her offenses were more numerous. The losses from 
this source fell most heavily on the merchants and ship- ^s'gf^ujgg^ 
owners, chiefly federalists and friends of England, who Alone, 
wished for peace with that country. Since Macon's bill 
No. 2 removed the restrictions on trade, pleasing the maritime class, 
and as we could not well fight France for doing what her rival did to a 
much larger extent, the prospect for peace would have been brighter 
in 1810, if seizures had been the only source of irritation. But 
another source of resentment was impressments, practiced, it is true, 
by both nations, but on a much larger scale by England. 
Here the brunt of wrong fell on the sailor class. As ^Q^^^.^~ 
story after story was told of native Americans carried 
away into the hard service of the British navy, the popular ire rose 
higher and higher. British ships took sailors from ships in American 
harbors without regard to the neutrality laws, and lay in wait off the 
chief ports of the Atlantic coast, searching the vessel that came out. 
All the old hostility which lingered in American minds from the days 
of the revolution, or sprang up in connection with Jay's negotiations, 
now flared up again, and the nation drifted toward war. 

Had England been wise, much of this irritation would have been 
avoided. It is true she did not wish war with the United States. 
Engaged in a life and death struggle to stay the advance of ^ , ., 
Bonaparte in Europe, she had adopted the policy of starv- ^^tfty^g ^ 
ing her enemy into subjection. If our merchants tried to 
evade her regulations, so much the worse for them, and if she seized 
stringently the sailors she claimed as hers to enable her to man her 
ships-of-war, so much the worse for the sailors. It was no tim.e, 
thought Canning, for the niceties of international courtesy. But 
America did not desire war, and had Canning's position . . 
been asserted with more consideration, war would probably incidents 
have been avoided. As it was, there occurred several harsh 
incidents, which Jefferson and Madison were willing to overlook, 
but which goaded the popular mind until they resulted in a wave 


314 THE WAR OF 1812 

of hatred which the administration could not resist, until congress at 
last forced the president to begin the struggle against his best judg- 
ment. In this sense George Canning was the chief author of the war 
of 1812. 

The first of these incidents was the Chesapeake-Leopard affair, 1807. 
At that time impressments were very frequent. An English squadron 

searching for some French ships came into Lynnhaven 
I. chesa- Bdij, near Norfolk, Virginia, and anchored there. Several 
'"^"''Va"-" of their sailors deserted, some of them Americans pre- 
1807. ' viously impressed into the British service. At that time 

the naval ship, Chesapeake, was taking on her heavy guns 
preparatory to her departure for the Mediterranean. It was reported 
that she had shipped some of the deserting British sailors, and Admiral 
Berkley, commanding the British ships on the station at Halifax, 
ordered that she be intercepted at sea and searched. Her captain, 
Barron, was ordered by the president to take care that no British 
deserters were in his crew, and thought he had fulfilled his instructions, 
but one man under an assumed name escaped his notice. Just be- 
fore he sailed, the British ship, Leopard, came to Lynnhaven Bay 
with Berkley's orders. June 22 she followed the Chesapeake, as the 
latter stood out to sea, came alongside at close range, and signalled 
that she had dispatches. Barron allowed her to send a boat, and an 
officer coming on deck handed him Berkley's order with the announce- 
ment that if deserters were aboard, they must be handed over. Bar- 
ron replied that he had none of the kind mentioned. He should have 
prepared for action, but the letter from the Leopard was not explicit, 
and he did not realize he was about to be attacked. A few minutes 
after the officer left the Chesapeake the British ship came within pistol 
shot, having the advantage of the wind, fired a shot across the Chesa- 
peake's bow, and followed it by a broadside. The two ships were of 
nearly equal strength, and the British captain did not wish to lose the 
advantage of beginning his work before his opponent was ready. 
Barron was entirely unprepared for battle, but hastened his efforts 
while his helpless vessel sustained for fifteen minutes the enemy's fire. 
All he could do was unavailing, and he hauled down his colors with 
three men killed and eighteen wounded. Ere they touched the deck, 
one of his officers, for the honor of the flag, managed to fire one gun, 
the only reply the Americans made to the cruel punishment they re- 
ceived. Then the British came aboard, found three Americans who, 
having been impressed on a British ship had deserted and joined the 
Chesapeake, and the one native British deserter who had enlisted under 
an assumed name ; and these were taken off. The American ship 
made her way to Norfolk, where her arrival was received with an out- 
burst of rage which spread over the country until the whole nation 
quivered with excitement comparable to that which ninety-one years 
later was aroused by the destruction of the Maine. Barron was sus- 


pended for five years because he had not been prepared for action, and 
Jefferson exerted all his art to prevent immediate war. 

He recognized the strength of the popular indignation, and for a time 
showed energy. He promptly issued a proclamation ordering British 
public ships out of American waters and forbidding Ameri- 
can citizens to furnish them supplies. He sent off to course°°^ 
London a demand for reparation, for the punishment of 
Berkley, and for the relinquishment of impressments generally. 
When Canning received this demand he offered to investigate the in- 
cident and do what was just, but he refused to consider the demand 
that the British government give up impressments. The British press 
and public, long accustomed to resent the pretensions of the Yankee 
nation, applauded his position and demanded war, if war was neces- 
sary to support England's supremacy at sea. Here was a direct 
challenge, but Canning thought the president would not . , 

accept it. He recalled Berkley, who had acted without Atti3e.^ 
orders, but a proclamation was issued warning British 
seamen who had been "enticed" into foreign service to return to their 
allegiance, declaring that if taken on board enemy ships they would 
be treated as traitors, and commanding naval officers to seize them on 
merchant vessels and to demand them from captains of foreign naval 
ships. At the same time it was decided to transfer negotiations in re- 
gard to the recent affair to Washington, where Erskine was the British 

When this was known in America, congress was in session, and the 
embargo act was soon passed. It showed Jefferson's purpose to 
negotiate while he employed "peaceful coercion." Four 
days after it passed George Rose arrived to treat for the ^jfg^^^^ 
settlement of the Chesapeake affair. He was instructed iggg. 
to demand the withdrawal of Jefferson's recent proclama- 
tion as a condition precedent to negotiations. After some hesitation 
the president agreed that this should be done and asked Rose to show 
his instructions. The latter unwillingly complied. He would restore 
the impressed seamen, he said, if we would disavow Barron for en- 
couraging the desertion of British sailors. This was distinctly what 
Barron had not done ; to concede it would put us in the wrong, and the 
negotiations came suddenly to an end. Probably Canning had not in- 
tended that they should have a more successful course. Rose re- 
turned to England, the recent outrage was not redressed, three Ameri- 
can-born sailors remained in a British prison, "peaceful coercion" 
was demonstrating its inadequacy to deal with the situation, and a 
large portion of the people were coming to the conviction 
that nothing but war would force the stubborn Canning pjckering. 
to a reasonable attitude. But Rose discovered one fact 
while in America to which he later clung tenaciously. He learned how 
much opposed to war was the federalist party in New England, and he 

3i6 THE WAR OF 1812 

made a fast friend of Senator Timothy Pickering, of Massachusetts, 
who led him to believe that in case of war the states east of the Hudson 
might be withdrawn from the union and attached to England. Pick- 
ering cherished the idea, and his correspondence with Rose in the years 
immediately following gave prominent Englishmen a mischievous 
idea of American affairs. 

Rose's short course ran through the three first months of 1808. He 
left British interests in the hands of the regular minister, Erskine, a, 
, whig, a friend of conciliation, and a man who saw with 
3. rs ne s g^i^^j-j-^-^ ^\^q rising tide of hostility toward England. Ad- 
vising Canning that war feeling was increasing, he was in 
the spring of 1809 instructed to make arrangements for a treaty which 
would remove all the differences between the two powers. The terms 
proposed were very hard, but Erskine believed himself justified in 
modifying them, and concluded a treaty so favorable to America that 
Canning repudiated it at sight. Before this was known in America 
many ships loaded with produce set sail for Europe, assured that 
British restriction would be inoperative when they arrived. Their 
disappointment was keen, but Canning allowed them to return home 
without seizure since they sailed under misapprehension. 

Erskine was now recalled, and Jackson, a narrow and obstinate 
Briton, took his place, with the promise that he should retain the post 
at least a year. He began by tactlessly telling Madison 
'^' ■f^^'., that Erskine had been overreached by the American 
Mission. government. He was asked to withdraw the expression, 
and when he refused received a curt notice that no further 
communications would be held with him. He departed from Washing- 
ton in high rage, leisurely visiting Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York, 
and Boston, where the federalists received him with demonstrations of 
sympathy. According to promise, he was allowed to hold his position 
until September, 1810. It was evident that England cared little to 
preserve peace with us, and all the time the popular resentment in- 

At this point the course of our story turns to France. Napoleon's 

attitude toward the United States was as unfair as England's, but his 

power to injure was smaller because of his weakness at 

TheBa- gg^^ jje chiefly exercised it in seizing our ships by two 

D°J!!?K-f,f-n^* notable decrees. Just after he knew of the embargo act, 
Kambouillet , i i . i ti i am n o ^i 

Decree. he ordered, m the Bayonne decree, April 17, 1808, the 

seizure of all ships in French ports flying the American 

flags. Such vessels, he said, could not be truly American, since the 

embargo act forbade them to leave their home ports. A great deal of 

property was thus confiscated, and the American government spent 

much time trying to get payment for it. March 23, 1810, Napoleon 

issued the Rambouillet decree, confiscating every ship which had 

entered a port of France or her dependencies since the preceding May 


20. Under it several hundred vessels were taken. The procedure 
was justified on the ground that the non-intercourse act forbade French 
ships to come to American ports and authorized their seizure if they vio- 
lated the act. It was really taken because Napoleon needed money, 
which he got in large amounts from the sale of the confiscated property. 

Before America fully understood this deliberate perfidy, Napoleon 
was planning another stroke, the object being to lead us to war with 
England. With Macon's bill No. 2 in mind he caused 
Madison to be told that the Berlin and Milan decrees would ^^^°}^°\ 
be repealed November i, 18 10, his understanding being Madison, 
that congress had abandoned non-intercourse and would 
oppose England's restrictions. We had not undertaken to resist 
England, but only to apply non-intercourse to her commerce. Madi- 
son should have remembered this, but he was anxious to open the 
suspended commerce, and too readily accepted the promises of France. 
November 2 he gave notice that France had removed her restrictions, 
and March 2, 181 1, congress reimposed non-intercourse on England, 
as Macon's bill No. 2 contemplated. It was soon evident that 
Napoleon had hoodwinked our president ; for by a system of licenses 
and a high tariff he made it as hard as ever for the American ships in 
French harbors. England could see this as well as anybody. She 
refused to repeal her Orders and complained that we favored France, 
her enemy. By this time American feeling was so strong against 
England that our people did not care how she felt. We forgot to 
blame Napoleon, as we well might have done, and the government 
had begun to take a stififer tone toward Great Britain. It was just 
at this time, April i, that Monroe, according to the agreement made in 
1809, succeeded Smith as secretary of state. He had suffered many 
indignities while minister in England, and he must have taken keen 
delight in the rising tide of resistance which he observed in the country 
and the administration. 

A clear manifestation of this altered spirit came soon afterwards. 
In May, 181 1, the British frigate Guerriere was impressing sailors ofif 
Sandy Hook, and the American frigate. President, Captain 
John Rodgers, forty-four guns, was ordered to repair to the '^^® ''''^^'- 
post and stop the practice. He sailed promptly, passing ^^"(//ge/^ 
the scene of the affair of the Chesapeake and Leopard, four ign. 
years unredressed by England, and May 16, off the Virginia 
coast, encountered a British ship of war headed southward. Hoisting 
his colors, he gave chase, thinking the Guerriere was before him. At 
sunset he was overhauling the fugitive, who at last came to in the 
twilight but refused to give her name. Suddenly a shot was fired 
which struck the President's mast. Immediately the American ship 
began to fire, and after a fifteen-minute battle the stranger ceased to 
fire and reported herself in distress. Rodgers lay to until morning, 
when, to his disappointment he learned that he had not attacked the 

3i8 THE WAR OF i5i2 

Guerriere, as he supposed, but the Little Belt, about half his size. Her 
captain alleged that the President fired first, but the evidence to the 
contrary was overwhelming. A short time later a new British minister 
arrived in Washington, announcing that he was instructed to settle 
the Chesapeake-Leopard dispute; but the nation, glowing with enthusi- 
asm for Rodger's action, cared little for the overture. The minister 
was asked if the trade restrictions would be relaxed, and when he said 
"No" his work was at an end. 

Additional hostility to England was engendered by the outbreak, 
in 1811, of Indian troubles in Indiana, where the white settlers were 

now steadily penetrating. By a treaty of 1809 the Indians 
Harrison of central Indiana ceded a large tract of land on the Wa- 
aiid the bash. It was the ninth similar step since the treaty of 

western In- Greenville, 1795. The more patriotic Indians opposed 
dians, 1811. this relinquishment of their ancestral lands, and declared 

the treaty of 1809 illegal. They found leaders in two 
brothers, Tecumseh and "The Prophet," men of exceptionable abihty, 
who lived peaceably with an agricultural tribe where Tippecanoe Creek 
joins the Wabash. They had great influence with the neighboring 
tribes and united them in a league to oppose further encroachments by 
the whites. In 181 1 Tecumseh went to the South to form a similar 
league among the Creeks, Cherokees, Choctaws, and Chickasaws. 

Taking advantage of his absence, William Henry Harrison, 
xf^'ecanoe governor of Indiana Territory, with 800 men, marched into 

the region recently ceded and came at last to the town on 
the Tippecanoe. Here he was surprised in the early morning by about 
400 Indians, and lost 188 killed and wounded before he beat off the 
attack. As the foe retreated and left their village to be burned, Harri- 
son was hailed victor throughout the Northwest. The Indians had re- 
ceived arms and ammunition from Canada, and this was taken as an 
additional wrong from England. 

Meanwhile, the popular resentment had expressed itself in the elec- 
tion of 1810, when seventy new members were sent to congress, most 

of them replacing advocates of peace. Before this the 
Changed leaders in congress were men whose experience went back to 
Sentiment ^j^g |.jj^^g q£ |.j^g revolution. They had seen so many dark 
Election of <^3.y?, that they feared to hope for bright ones. The new 
1810. men were young. Their leaders were Clay and Johnson of 

Kentucky, Porter of New York, Grundy of Tennessee, and 
Lowndes, Cheves,and Calhoun of South Carolina ; and the average age 
of the seven was only thirty-four. They had fought for their election 

most vigorously, and felt bitterly toward the old Virginia 
Party " group of leaders, who never quite forgave them their vic- 
tory. Both factions called themselves republicans, but 
the newer men rejected many of the more theoretical principles of the 
old school. They believed that the national honor had been insulted, 


and demanded war, their eyes meanwhile being cast at Canada. 
They began their work by electing Clay speaker and securing the im- 
portant committees. 

Before congress met on November 4 Madison accepted the demands 
of the war party, and his annual message recounted our wrongs and sug- 
gested measures of defense. The old leaders opposed 
this, but the federalists, thinking to embarrass their an- Madison 
cient enemies, joined the new party in raising an army of ^j^'^ ^^° 
25,000 men and in putting the navy on a war footing. An Party. 
attempt to raise taxes, however, resulted in failure, and the 
government was left to support war, if war came, by means of a loan. 
For that kind of an operation it was seriously handicapped 
by the refusal of the preceding congress to recharter the ^' S- Bank 
United States bank. The many state banks could not chartered, 
make the loan of $11,000,000 now called for. At this 
time the bonds could not be sold in Europe, and the federalists, who 
were chiefly the trading class, would not take them because they op- 
posed the war, and when the bids were opened only $6,000,000 had 
been subscribed. Lack of money was most serious throughout the 
war about to begin. 

In May, 181 2, a republican caucus renominated Madison for the 
presidency. He had the support of the war party and his small per- 
sonal following ; but the friends of Samuel Smith did not 
attend the caucus. In New York, where the two CHntons Madison 
dominated the repubHcans, much jealousy of the Virginia nated. '" 
supremacy appeared, and a movement was rapidly form- 
ing for a coalition between the malcontents and the federalists, in 
opposition to Madison. George Clinton died in April, and Virginia, 
turning away from the alliance with New York, took Massachusetts 
for her Northern yoke-fellow, offering the vice-presidency to Elbridge 
Gerry, who had recently been republican governor of that common- 
wealth. Clinton's death, however, did not end the plans of the New 
Yorkers. His nephew, De Witt Clinton, took up his mantle, was 
nominated for the presidency by the New York legislature, and ran 
the race with the endorsement of the federalists. When the votes were 
cast in the following November Madison had 128 of the 217, eight 
from Vermont and all those from the states south of the Delaware. 
Had Pennsylvania not given him her twenty-five votes he would have 
been defeated. 

England now saw plainly the drift of the United States toward war. 
To the American protests was added the fact that the English people 
were suffering for food products. Wheat sold at nearly 
four dollars a bushel, and the trade with the continent J^f Br'^'sh 

1 r r 11- 11T1--1 Relenting, 

went on under a system of forged licenses, both British 

and French, for which honest Englishmen could only blush. Under 
these conditions there arose a powerful demand that the Orders in 

320 THE WAR OF 1812 

Council be repealed, and the ministry were urged to relieve a disas- 
trous situation before an American war should be added to the other 
burdens. At last they were willing to yield, if the French government 
would state publicly that its decrees had been repealed. No such 
statement was expected, but the offer showed that the government was 
weakening. May 11, 181 2, the prime minister, Spencer Percival, who 
had stood stoutly for the Orders, was assassinated by a fanatic. 
The friends of America, led by the briUiant Henry Brougham, now 

pressed harder than ever for repeal. Then came news 
J^^ ^^^^^^ that the United States had declared an embargo for two 
June 23. ' months as a preliminary step to war. With the nation 

clamoring for peace, and with Brougham eloquently plead- 
ing the cause of the starving people, the new ministry at last gave 
way, announcing on June 16 that the Orders would be withdrawn, a 
promise which they redeemed on the 23d. 

The British relaxation came suddenly, and the Americans were un- 
prepared for it. The war party was in control in congress, and carried 

the president with it. June i he sent a war message which 
WarDe- occasioned a short and sharp debate, followed on June 
Tune i8 1 8 by a declaration of war for which the vote was 19 to 

13 in the senate and 79 to 49 in the house. Had there 
been a cable the war would probably not have occurred. As it was, 
there was a feeble attempt to patch up differences when news came 
from London, but feelings were now too much aroused for such a step, 
and the project failed. Fourteen of the senators and 62 of the rep- 
resentatives who voted for war lived south of the Delaware. Only 
II of those who voted against it lived in that region, and of these but 

two were republicans. Thirty-three federalist representa- 
U^teT °°* ^^^^^ issued an address declaring the struggle unjustifiable. 

Thus the war was sectional, and began with dissension in the 

nation. The war party thought that harmony would be restored once 

fighting began, but the event showed how much they were mistaken. 

In fact, the country was not ready for war. The president, timid, 

diplomatic, and unable to control the politicians around him, could not 

inspire with energy an administration in which the only 
Weakness first rate man, Gallatin, was harassed out of his peace of 
of the Ad- rnind by enemies in his own party. The army, neglected 
Uon!\rmy, ^y the republicans, was without trained officers. The 
andNavy.' West Point Academy, authorized in 1802, had as yet 

yielded none of the fruits for which it later was distin- 
guished. Officers who had served in the revolution were now too old 
for effective duty, and the new political appointees were pompous and 
inexperienced, and lacked the respect of the privates. The navy, dis- 
dained by Jefferson, had only the frigates built by the federalists, and 
some smaller vessels constructed for use against Tripoli, less than 
twenty in all. But their officers were excellent, and the sailor popula- 


tion was as good as could be found in the world. The gunboats Jeffer- 
son built for harbor defense were not able to take the sea. The 
treasury was without money, and the country shuddered at the thought 
of higher taxes. Loans were the only resource, and these were difficult 
with the moneyed class opposed to war and the money markets of 
Europe prostrated by the struggle then raging there. The young 
leaders in the house realized these difl5culties, and strove to surmount 
them. They carried through congress a bill to raise the 
army, now a little more than six thousand strong, by 25,000 f^°^ 
men, and another bill to authorize the president to call out party. 
50,000 militia. They also asked for an addition to the 
navy of twelve seventy-fours and twenty frigates, but this was re- 
fused. WTien they moved war taxes there was further denial, and they 
were forced to content themselves with a loan of Si 1,000,000. All 
this happened early in 181 2. 

The war party planned a vigorous campaign in Canada and the oc- 
cupation of Florida, if Spain, England's ally in Europe, should make 
war on America. They thought the Canadians would 
•n-illingly throw oflf the British yoke in order to unite %\ith pj^^^j^ ^° 
the great repubhc to the southward, and they believed 
that the war would end quickly and \'ictoriously. They expected the 
Atlantic ports to be blockaded, and trade to be driven from the sea, 
but so much had been endured on that score that a little more suffering 
would hardly make a difference. Kentucky and the Northwest were 
keen for the Canadian campaign, while Tennessee longed for the signal 
which would open to them the Coosa- Alabama line of communication, 
with free exit at Mobile. As it turned out, there was no 
war ^-iih Spain, but Mobile was occupied without resist- -v^Te^ pian 
ance. On the other hand, England's plan, more slowly 
formed, was to beat back the attempt on Canada, to blockade the 
coast, and crush our ships at sea, and in the latter part of the war to 
carry offensive operations into the home of the war party, Virginia and 
Louisiana. Into these four phases, therefore, the actual fighting of the 
war of 1 8 12 was resolved. 

/rf^ fC>, The Struggle for Can.\da 

The Canadian defenses were along the lakes, a series of posts from 
Mackinac to Lake Champlain. It was proposed to break this line at 
the eastern end, while supporting expeditions carried it at 
Fort Maiden, near Detroit, at Fort Erie, on the Xiagara Canadian 
river, and at Kingston. Those places taken, all the Defense, 
columns would concentrate on Montreal. It was thought 
the campaigns would be accomplished w\\\\ little or no opposition. 
Had the commanders been good and the cooperation perfect, such 
might have been the result. 


THE WAR OF 1812 

The first move was from Detroit, where General Hull commanded 
with nearly 2500 men. In July he crossed the Detroit river and 
marched toward Maiden. General Brock commanded the 
British force and made heroic efforts to defend the position. 
Hull moved slowly, gave him time to concentrate, and 
then fell back because he dared not attack a force half the size of his 
own, nearly half of his opponents being Indians. The army was dis- 
gusted, their want of confidence in their leader only increased 


Hull's panic, and when Brock, following the Americans to Detroit, 
surrounded the place and demanded its surrender, the fort, garrison, 
and supplies, to his surprise, were handed over without an effort to de- 
fend them. Hull pleaded that he was surrounded, his communications 
cut, and his men likely to be butchered by the hostile Indian if he 
resisted to the end. His position was indeed perilous, but a braver 
man would have made some effort to defend himself. A 

Surrender ^^^^ "^^^ ^ ^^^^ '''•^^^ ^^ ^'^^ Convicted by a court martial 
of cowardice and neglect of duty and sentenced to be shot, 
but the president pardoned him on account of honorable revolutionary 
services. The loss of Detroit left the frontier open to Indian raids 
and created disgust for the men directing the war at the time when 
there ought to have been enthusiasm. 


Nor was there more success at other parts of the border. The 
column sent against Montreal got under way after much delay and in 
November reached the Canadian line, whereupon the 
militia refused to leave the country and were marched Repulse of 
back by their commander, Dearborn, to winter quarters j^°^ 
at Plattsburg. The other column failed also. Assembled Columns, 
on the Niagara to the number of six thousand it essayed to 
carry the war into Canada under General Stephen Van Rensselaer, a 
New York politician and an inexperienced general. The regulars 
under General Smythe refused to cooperate, and Van Rensselaer was 
driven back from an attack on Queenstown with a loss of 1000. Then 
Smythe was placed in command. He was as bad a commander as 
his predecessor, and his attempted invasion in November was repulsed 
so easily that he was freely accused of cowardice. In these three for- 
ward movements the private soldiers showed ability, but their com- 
manders and many of the other officers were evidently unfit for their 
posts. By the middle of 1813 all these commanders were removed. 

After Hull's defeat William H. Harrison, of Tippecanoe fame, was 
placed over the Western army, which he organized as fast as a poor com- 
missary department permitted. Late in the autumn of 
181 2 he was in a position to move forward, and marched to Harrison's 
attack the British at Maiden. He sent General Win- i^^Jhr'^" 
Chester forward to make preparations at the rapids of the Northwest. 
Maumee, fifty miles from Maiden. While there, Win- 
chester was called to the help of Frenchtown, on the Raisin river, 
thirty miles beyond. He hurried forward with 900 men, took the place, 
but could not fortify it. January 22, 1813, he was attacked and de- 
feated by Proctor commanding more than 1000 whites and Indians. 
Surrounded in the snow, the Americans were cut down or massacred by 
the Indians, until the remainder, over 500 in all, were forced to sur- 
render. At night the savages, crazed by liquor, fell on the wounded 
prisoners, whom Proctor left without guard, and killed them to a man. 
The act infuriated the men of the frontier, and "Remember the 
Raisin " became their battle cry for the rest of the war. Harrison was 
forced to give up his advance, but he did not lose the confidence of the 
Western people. 

Throughout the spring and summer of 1813 he made ready for 
another attack, and in September was before Maiden with 
4500 men. By this time the Americans had gained con- ^^ ^°' . 
trol of Lake Erie, and the British, not daring to with- 
stand a siege with no help possible by water, burned Detroit and 
Maiden and retreated. Harrison pursued them on 
Canadian territory, forced a fight at the river Thames, T^ames^ *^ 
and won a signal victory. One of the slain was Tecum- 
seh, who from the first had aided the British. It was the first 
successful battle in the long announced invasion of Canada, and 
it gave peace to the Northwest. 

324 THE WAR OF 1812 

For this valuable result the gunboats on Lake Erie deserve much 
credit. Hull's surrender showed that we never could retake Detroit 

as long as it could be supplied by water. Accordingly 
Perry's every efifort was made to build and buy ships for service 

Lake Erie. ^^ ^^^ lake. By September, 1813, Captain Oliver H. 

Perry had six vessels well armed and manned. On the 
loth he met and destroyed the British lake fleet, slightly weaker than 
his own. His dispatch announcing the victory ran: "We have 
met the enemy and they are ours. Two ships, two brigs, one schooner, 
and one sloop." The victor became very popular. 

Holding Lake Erie and Detroit did not mean the conquest of 
Canada. Montreal was still to be taken, and for that purpose General 

James Wilkinson was called from New Orleans to take 
Wilkinson's command of the large force at Sackett's Harbor, near 
F^lure on Kingston. He was to march down the St. Lawrence, sup- 
Lawrence, ported by another army led by General Wade Hampton 

by way of Lake Champlain. The only virture in Wil- 
kinson's appointment, which was due to his friendship with Armstrong, 
now secretary of war, was that it made way for Andrew Jackson's 
command in Louisiana in 1814. Wilkinson was incompetent, and 
Hampton, who was a good general, cooperated with him reluctantly. 
Wilkinson moved slowly, as if he did not desire to succeed. Hampton 
reached an advanced position on the Chateaugay, held it until con- 
vinced that the other army would do nothing, and then returned 
to winter quarters at Plattsburg, on Lake Champlain. Wilkinson, 
who had fought some skirmishes without success, then fell back 
to Sackett's Harbor. Hampton, who resented being placed under the 
incompetent Wilkinson, resigned, and his superior was at length 
removed from command. Thus ended in failure the second year 
of fighting on the New York border. The most valuable thing accom- 
plished was that through defeat the army was seasoned to fighting, 
the old generals had been weeded out, and a number of capable 
minor ofiicers had been given an opportunity to show their abilities. 
Of the latter were Major General Jacob Brown, in command of the 
forces on the Niagara, and Brigadier General Winfield Scott, who 
served under him, an excellent drill master and a bold fighter. 

The year 18 14 began gloomily for the Americans. They were dis- 
couraged by a war which brought so little success, New England 

seemed on the point of withdrawing from the union. 
Sobering volunteering had nearly ceased in the Atlantic states, 
Defeat. 3,nd the treasury was empty. Moreover, Napoleon wa^ 

checked in Europe, and England might be expected to 
carry on the war with more energy in America. All this sobered 
the people, and as the months passed men began to forget that it was 
a repubHcan war and to reahze that the life of the nation was at 


They were encouraged by news from Brown. All thought of a 
grand offensive movement into Canada had been given up, but he 
was not willing to remain idle. Moving about 2500 
men into the enemy's territory, he attacked gallantly, ^^j^^^ , 
Scott, who was selected to lead the advance with 1300 Lane "1814^ 
men, met, July 5, Riall with 1500 men and won a signal 
victory at Chippewa. The Americans showed great eflficiency in 
marksmanship, and lost only 297, while their opponents lost 515. 
Brown now united with Scott, and they met the main body of the 
British three weeks later at Lundy's Lane. The action began in 
the afternoon and lasted five hours, until darkness intervened. Every 
part of the field was hotly contested, and the Americans gradually 
pushed, the British from their positions. When the fighting ceased 
they had lost 853 out of 2000 engaged and the enemy had lost 879 
out of 3000. So far as actual fighting went. Brown had the better 
of it, but he considered it advisable to fall back when his opponent 
received reenforcements. The movement into Canada was abandoned. 
It had accomplished all that could be expected in showing that 
American soldiers could win victories when properly led and trained. 

While this campaign was being fought, Sir George Prevost, com- 
manding in Canada, led a splendid army of 11,000 men along Bur- 
goyne's old route, hoping to pass Lake Champlain and 
create consternation on the Hudson. Such a campaign, McDon- 
if successful, must have an important influence in New oug^'sVic- 
England, where an active group of leaders wished to have L^j^g 
those states join Canada in order to be rid of the Virginia Champlain. 
predominancy. General Macomb, commanding at Platts- 
burg, on Lake Champlain, had only 2000 men to meet this invasion, 
and Prevost felt that he could easily dispose of them. On the lake 
were two small fleets, the American commander being Captain Thomas 
McDonough, a young man of thirty, who proved to have remarkable 
capacity. The fighting strength of the British ships was double 
that of the Americans. To succeed in his plans Prevost must destroy 
McDonough, and the two squadrons joined in deadly combat on 
September 11, while the army before Plattsburg awaited the result. 
The British expected the victory because their largest ship, a frigate 
of thirty-seven guns, outclassed our strongest vessel. They concen- 
trated their attack on the Saratoga, McDonough's largest ship. 
After two hours' fighting it was disabled, when the commander, by 
a daring maneuver, turned it around so that a fresh broadside was 
brought to bear, with the result that the British frigate struck her 
colors in half an hour. By that time the whole British squadron 
was defeated, and Prevost's army retreated to Canada. McDonough's 
achievement occasioned an outburst of joy throughout the country, 
and, like Perry's victory on Lake Erie, it rendered safe an important 
part of the frontier. 

326 THE WAR OF 1812 

For the blundering in this important part of the theater of war 
the Virginia regime was chiefly responsible. Jefferson's non-resistance 

policy was more creditable to his heart than to his head. 
Why the jjj^ predecessors filled army and navy with federalist 
W^k.^ officers and showered contempt upon republicans who 

might have been appointed. He repaid their scorn with 
interest, and in army appointments he ignored the federalists and 
collected as weak a group of incompetents as could be found in any 
service. Their selection can only be explained on the theory that 
he believed they would never have anything of importance to do. 
That the navy did not undergo the same deterioration was due to 
the fact that its officers were taken from the maritime class, mostly 
federalists in sympathy, and to the effect of the Tripolitan war in 
keeping alive the best traditions of the navy. With regard to the army 
Madison continued the same course as Jefferson. Eustis, secretary 
of war from March 7, 1809, to December 31, 1812, was a shiftless 
politician who knew not how to choose the generals or to plan a cam- 
paign. His successor, Armstrong, more active than Eustis, muddled 
things by holding to his friend, the incompetent Wilkinson, and by 
going to the field himself, where he produced confusion by interfering 
with plans of better men, until at last, overwhelmed by the loss of the 
capital, he was forced out of office August 30, 18 14. He was succeeded 
by Monroe, a more practical administrator though not an ideal secre- 
tary, who outlasted the war. Hamilton, secretary of the navy from 
March 7, 1809, to January 13, 1813, was as weak as Eustis and did 
little to strengthen his department. His successor in office until 
December i, 18 14, was more active and strengthened the navy by 
constructing small ships of war to operate against the enemy's com- 
merce. Thus in these two important departments defeat and disaster 
taught wisdom as truly as in the command of the armies. It required 
much sad experience to teach the nation the necessity of training 
in order to conduct such an important affair as a great national 

Operations at Sea 

The war party did not despise the navy, as their project to build 
seventy-fours and frigates shows ; but they could not overcome 

the prejudices of the regular republicans. In 1807, 
State of when Barron's failure to fight the Leopard caused great 
in 1812. disgust among those who opposed a navy on principle, it 

was decided to discharge the crews of the leading frigates 
and to raise the number of gunboats to 257. Congress indorsed the 
policy. Jefferson preferred gunboats because they confined the 
navy to harbor defense and were cheap. The federalists jeered at 
his idea that small craft armed with light guns could keep the enemy's 
ships out of our ports, and the experience of war showed they were 


right. The war party in 1812 had come to realize this, and failing 
to get the new ships they wished they put the vessels we had in a 
proper state of service. Eight ships, four of them forty-fours, with an 
equal number of smaller vessels, was the strength of the navy. Most 
people thought that to send them against the mistress of the sea was 
but to throw them away; but many inward-bound merchant ships 
were on the ocean in need of protection. Five ships, commanded by 
Rodgers and Decatur, were in New York harbor when the official 
information of the declaration of war reached that place, and in an 
hour they were at sea searching for a British convoy known to be on 
the ocean. They sailed boldly across the Atlantic to the English 
coast, thence to the Madeiras, and then to Boston without adventure. 

The day before Rodgers arrived in Boston came, also, the Constitu- 
tion, Captain Isaac Hull, nephew of the commander at Detroit, 
with thrilling news of victory. August 19 she met and 
defeated the British ship Guerriere, 38 guns, after a fight ^av^^^^"^ 
of half an hour. The disabled ship could not be taken Duels, 
into port, and was fired and abandoned. She had been 
very active in impressments, and her destruction occasioned joy 
from one end of the coast to the other. Then followed a series of 
naval duels in which the Americans bore themselves with distinction. 
In October the Wasp captured the Frolic and started with her for 
an American port, but both ships were later taken by a larger enemy 
vessel. Shortly afterwards the United States took the Macedonian 
and carried her safely into Newport, while in December the Constitution 
defeated and burned the Java, ^8 guns. February 24 the Hornet 
sunk the Peacock after an action of fifteen minutes. In all these 
affairs the American ship, except the Wasp, was stronger than her 
opponent ; but the accurate fire and good seamanship of the Americans 
astonished the enemy and brought them to realize that their best 
efforts were demanded on this side the Atlantic. In America, 
also, the effect was marked. A wave of enthusiasm for the navy 
swept the country, and congress voted to build sixteen new ships 
of war. 

June I, 1 8 13, came a disaster which sadly checked the American 
ardor. Captain Lawrence, who commanded the Hornet against 
the Peacock, was now in charge of the Chesapeake, fitting in Boston, 
with orders to cruise off the mouth of the St. Lawrence 
in order to intercept supplies for the British in Canada, ^j^^ ^cTe°a- 
Blockading the harbor was the Shannon, Captain Broke, peahe. 
with some smaller ships. He was anxious for a combat 
with the Chesapeake, sent in a challenge, and ordered his companion 
ship away so as to induce Lawrence to come out. The latter needed 
Uttle urging. He was rashly brave, and the recent victories had made 
him overconfident. He had been in command only ten days, his 
best officers were ill and absent, and his crew were raw and sullen. 

328 THE WAR OF 1812 

The ships were nearly of equal size, but the Shannon was manned by 
a well-drilled crew who adored their commander. Lawrence had not 
received the Briton's challenge when he learned that only a frigate 
kept the blockade. He was not averse to action, and the opportunity 
to get to sea seemed too good to miss ; so he boldly sailed out, and 
at six o'clock the action began at the outer edge of Massachusetts Bay. 
In sixteen minutes Lawrence was mortally wounded, and his ship 
had surrendered after a brave battle. The Chesapeake was carried 
to Halifax, where the body of her commander was given honorable 
burial by the victors. The remains were later reinterred in New 
York. Lawrence's utterance as he was carried below, "Don't give 
up the ship," was repeated far and wide, and the people forgot his 
rashness in admiration of his courage. 

The repeal of the Orders in Council by England led her to hope 
that the war might be avoided, but she would not give up impress- 
ments, and the hope of adjustment vanished. It thus 
Naval Sue- happened that it was not until the spring of 1813 that 
Checked. she gave her best strength to the task before her. At this 
time the blockade was made stringent, commercial ships 
were vigorously seized, and a strong naval force continued off the 
coast. Decatur, with the United States and Macedonian, trying 
to get to sea by way of Long Island Sound, was forced into New 
London harbor and bottled up for the rest of the war. In the spring 
of 1 8 14 he was transferred to the President, blockaded at New York. 
It was not until the following January that he was able to get out 
in a storm, the blockaders pursuing and forcing him to an unequal 
fight, in which he surrendered. Similar fates awaited most of the other 
ships in the navy. The Adams was burned in the Penobscot, 1814, 
to prevent capture by the enemy; the Argus was defeated by the 
Pelican off the coast of Wales in 1813 ; the Enterprise, the newly 
built Frolic, and the Essex were all taken before the close of the war. 
The Constellation and the Congress were also securely blockaded in 
American harbors. At the beginning of the war we had 
Growth of ^ |-gj^ effective ships and seven smaller vessels ranked as 
1815.' brigs. So fast had the navy grown, spite of losses, that 

at the close of 18 15 it contained seventeen ships, three 
of them new seventy-fours, nine brigs, thirteen schooners, and three 

War was hardly declared before American privateers were on the 
seas. Subscription lists posted at the merchants' coffeehouses 
. . invited all adventurous persons to share the expense and 

Privateers. Profit sure to come through despoiling Great Britain's 
rich maritime trade. In Massachusetts, New York, 
and Maryland the response was particularly generous. Three-fourths 
of the 492 Hcensed privateers were from these three states. Good 
sailing and the ability to get out of tight places were necessary qualities 



of a good privateer. Some of the captains displayed great boldness, 
attacking British privateers, and even small naval ships, with success. 
Half of the ships engaged in the field did not come up to these require- 
ments and took no prizes, but those best fitted for the enterprise 
paid their owners handsome profits, while they enriched our naval 
history with some of its most thrilling exploits. In the war of 181 2, 
1344 prizes were thus taken from Great Britain, the last in which 
the United States have resorted to privateering. 


The British Campaign on Chesapeake Bay 

In the summer of 1814, as Prevost prepared his invasion of New 
York by Lake Champlain, a British iieet under Admiral Cochrane 
and a army of 4000 men under Major General Ross 
appeared in the Chesapeake to create a diversion for the ^^^^ 
benefit of the northern operations. The plan was to pedition. 
take the capital and to seize Baltimore, especially disliked 
for its part in privateering. Ross landed without opposition at 
Benedict, on the Patuxent, forty miles from Washington, and marched 
unopposed on the city. News of his movement had reached the 
president seven weeks earlier, 
and the militia were frantically 
called out. They came to- 
gether slowly, commanded by 
General Winder, a man of lit- 
tle determination. Fall- 
ing back before the advancing 
foe, he at last faced them at 
Bladensburg, five miles from the 
capital. His position was good, 
a hill commanding a bridge 
across the Patuxent, and he had 
sufficient artillery. His forces 
were between six and seven 
thousand, all raw militia ex- 
cept five hundred marines and 
sailors under Captain Barney, 
of the navy. They were just 
assembled, did not know their 
officers, and Winder had no in- 
fluence over them. As the 
British approached the bridge 
they received the American 
artillery fire, but dashed across, 

formed, and advanced on the Americans. The militia delivered one 
or two fires, and fled pell-mell. Barney's men stood their ground, 

330 THE WAR OF 1812 

firing with steadiness until about to be surrounded, when they 
fled from a field on which they now had no support. The British 
. on the evening of the same day, August 24, entered 

Tak^en°^°° Washington, from which president, officials, and many 
residents had fled. The capitol, president's house, and 
the executive offices were burned by the troops. Ross justified 
this piece of vandalism as retaliation for the destruction of the parlia- 
ment building at Toronto in the preceding year. The 
B^Ud"^ Americans did not pretend to justify the outrages at 

Burned. Toronto, but asserted that it was the action of pri- 
vates, whereas the torch was applied in Washington at 
the direction of the commanding general. As an act of retaliation 
Ross's course went far beyond the action alleged as its justification, 
and it was committed with such evident relish by him and his officers 
that it cannot be defended as soldierly conduct. 

While Ross moved against Washington seven small vessels appeared 
before Alexandria, levied a contribution, and rejoined the main force 
as Ross, his work at Washington done, embarked his 
Atta^ed^ force and moved on Baltimore. September 11 he landed 
at North Point, twelve miles from the city, against which 
he advanced on a narrow neck of land between the Patapsco and an 
arm of the bay, saying he would winter in the city even if "it rained 
militia." Next morning he was mortally wounded in a skirmish, 
but his army continued to advance. The people of the city and state 
had collected to the number of 14,000, and earthworks were constructed 
to protect the place. The harbor was impeded by sunken hulks and 
defended by Fort McHenry, well garrisoned by regulars and sailors. 
While the army approached by land the navy under command of 
Admiral Cochrane began to shell the fort. After several hours' bom- 
bardment the admiral reported that he could not advance; and 
although the infantry had carried the American first line, they did 
not feel like charging the works before them, and it was decided to 
withdraw to the ships. The expedition dropped down the bay, 
and a month later sailed out the capes to take part in the expedition 
against Louisiana. 

The attack on Washington showed as clearly as the 

ofMilUia^ operations in Canada the weakness of untrained militia. 

It is still more evident that the disaster was due chiefly 

to the lack of intelligent general officers. But the campaign about to 

be conducted around New Orleans revealed the value of militia when 

well trained and well led. The destruction of the cap- 

tA^^°^ ital aroused great indignation against the administration, 

strong. ai^d Armstrong, secretary of war, resigned. He was chiefly 

responsible for the inertness in his department, although 

Madison and congress, it must be admitted, had given him slender 

resources. Armstrong was succeeded by Monroe, who for nearly a 

year was head of the state and war departments. 


Meanwhile, British troops had landed at various harbors in Massa- 
chusetts and Connecticut, burning such crafts as they found. A 
more serious demonstration was an expedition against 
the eastern coast of Maine. The country as far as the ^**^^^ °^ 
Penobscot was seized after little resistance by the natives. Elsewhere, 
with the intention of holding it after peace was made, 
in order to establish a safe route from Montreal to Halifax. When 
it was given up in 181 5, the inhabitants, it was said, regretted that 
they did not continue under British sway. 

The War on the Gulf Coast 

It will be remembered that the war party hoped for an opportunity 
to acquire Florida. Spain was England's ally, her South and Central 
American colonies were revolting one after the other, 
at home she was struggling for existence against Napoleon: for^j-lorida^ 
what better opportunity could there be, thought the 
expansionists, to oust her from the part of the coast which destiny 
evidently meant us to occupy ? Madison accepted the idea, and would 
have carried it out by invading Florida without other pretext than 
the Louisiana treaty, had not the senate restrained him. Spite of 
this, two important events happened on the Florida border, one of 
them resulting in increase of American territory. 

In 1810 the inhabitants of the part of West Florida nearest the 
Mississippi revolted against Spain, proclaimed themselves a state, 
seized the post at Baton Rouge, and asked for annexation 
to the United States. Madison by proclamation ordered ^^^°^ 
the governor of the territory of Lousiana to extend Acquked. 
authority over this district without coming into conflict 
with any Spanish post. He asserted our right to West Florida by 
the Louisiana treaty and proposed to hold the region in question 
subject to future agreement with Spain. Thus our authority was 
extended to the Pearl river, beyond which was Mobile in undisturbed 
Spanish possession. 

The revolt of the Spanish colonies in South America was suggestive, 
and a plan was made for a similar movement in East Florida. When 
it was accompHshed, the United States, it seems, was to 
step in and annex the territory, as at Baton Rouge. In jgiand* 
181 1 congress in a secret act authorized the president 
to take possession of Florida under certain conditions, and Madison 
appointed two commissioners who repaired to the Georgia frontier. 
Amelia Island, just within the Florida line, was the scene of much 
smuggling, which it was desirable to break up. Here occurred a 
weak attempt at a revolution, and American soldiers occupied the 
island, but the revolt had so little support from the inhabitants that 
Madison did not dare carry out the plans made for him. Amelia 
Island was held, however, until 1813. 

^^2 THE WAR OF 1812 

In the autumn of 1812 Madison called out 2070 west Tennessee 
militia under Andrew Jackson, to march to Natchez, expecting to 

use them against Florida. This was merely an execu- 
Seizure of tive act, and when congress refused to sanction the pro- 
E°ik^h posed expedition Jackson was recalled to Xash\dlle. 
Confess ^^^ west Tennessee militia were eager for war, and had 
1813. ' confidence in their leader. Their opportimity came late 

in 1 8 13, when it was decided to send them as one of three 
expeditions against the Creek Indians, who were on the warpath in 
sympathy \\-ith the Indians of the Xorthwest. The Tennesseans were 
to march into the Creek country from the north, the Georgia militia 
from the east, and an expedition from Xew Orleans was to approach 
through Mobile Bay and the Alabama river. 

The most difficult task was Jackson's, but it alone was successful. 
When the winter closed in he had reached the upper Coosa, after 

winning two \dctories over his adversaries. Four days 
Subdue^d ^ '"'^ marching and one good \-ictory would have given 

him complete success, but he could not get supplies, and 
his men mutinied and were sent home. With only a handful of 
followers he held what he had gained until new troops were raised, and 
March 27 completed the subjugation of the Creeks in the victory 
of Horse Shoe Bend, or Tohopeka. His campaign showed that he 
had remarkable power of command as well as resourcefulness and 
energy. In consequence he was made a major general and assigned 

to the command of the seventh military district. Besides 

MobUe Louisiana, the district included Mobile, which had been 

Seized. , . , • • * -i n -vt 

annexed -without resistance m April, 1813. Xow, as 

in regard to Baton Rouge, Madison acted under his interpretation 

of the Louisiana treaty. 

Jackson's first act in his new capacity was to make the treaty of 

Fort Jackson, August 9, by which the Creeks gave up their lands in 

southern and western Alabama. He thus opened a 
The Treaty ^,^^^ region to white settlement, and made safe the Coosa- 
Jackson. Alabama line of communication. Next he turned to 

Mobile. The advance guard of the great expedition 
against New Orleans had arrived at Pensacola; Jackson seized the 
town regardless of neutrality obligations, and the British sailed away. 

He was hardly back in Mobile when he learned that 
Occupied^ New Orleans was threatened by a body of more than 

10,000 troops. He hastened to the city, which was 
nearly undefended, calling the militia from Tennessee, Kentucky, 
and Georgia as he went. Had Winder, in the preceding summer, 
shown half Jackson's energy, Ross would not have reached Wash- 

December 10, the British fleet anchored in Lake Borgne, and 
early on the 23d a division of the army was landed eight miles below 


the city on a strip of land less than a niile wide, between the ri\-er 
and the swamp. Instantly Jackson was in motion, delivering in 
the evening and early night a sharp battle which drove 
the enemy to take refuge under the levee until reenforce- Arrival of 
ments came up from the ships. Then Jackson fell back g^^^^J^ 
and began to construct breastworks. Pakenham, the Orleans. 
British commander, was cautious, and would not move until 
all his forces were landed, including the artillery. He thus allowed 
Jackson time to construct formidable defenses, which the royal 
artiller}' could not destroy. On Januar}^ 8, 1S15, he threw away 
his caution and attempted to carry these works. He and his whole 
army held American militia in contempt, and thought 
they would break when charged \'igorously by British ^*"^® °^ 
regulars. In the early dawn two red-coated columns Orleans, 
rushed on Jackson's lines, one near the river and one 
near the swamp. They met a withering rifle-fire from which the 
bravest soldiers must have recoiled. T^nce they were rallied and led 
forward by their best officers, and each time repulsed \\'ith great 
slaughter. Pakenham and General Gibbs were killed, and General 
Keene severely wounded. The loss in this part of the army was 
1971 killed and wounded, and on Jackson's side 13. Meanwhile, 
Colonel Thornton, -oith 600 regulars, crossed to the west bank of the 
river to carry some batteries there, which bore on the ground over 
which the British must attack on the east side. He met an insufficient 
force of Louisiana and Kentucky militia, swept it aside, took the 
batteries, and held the west bank at discretion. Fortunately for 
the Americans, this movement was delayed until after the attack on 
their intrenchments on the east bank was repulsed, and by that severe 
blow the British were so crippled that they rehnquished the campaign 
and withdrew to their fleet. 

The victory at Xew Orleans was one of the great events in American 
history. It not only saved the mouth of the ^Mississippi from conquest 
and restored to the people confidence in their ability to 
^^•in battles, but it gave the Western people, who 'had ^f^*^*^^ 
won it without much help from the seaboard, the con- victory, 
fidence to assert a greater influence in national affairs. 
To these people, and to many others in all parts of the country, Jackson 
became the greatest living American. He had, besides his military 
qualities, political courage and integrity, which sustained him in 
a long and important career. He was unschooled in the arts of war 
and statesmanship, but in each field his remarkable natural sense 
made him essentially efficient. No American has left a stronger 
mark on our political histor\'. 

Before Jackson's \-ictor)' was won, peace was made between England 
and the United States. The Russian Czar, from 1S12 an ally of 
England, sought to end the war, and believed it might be done since 

334 THE WAR OF 1812 

the Orders in Council were repealed. He offered each party his 
services as mediator. Madison accepted, and in the spring of 1813, 
Bayard, of Delaware, and Gallatin, set out for St. Peters- 
Peace Ne- burg to join John Quincy Adams, our minister there, in 
BeKun°°^ a peace commission. The action was hasty; for Eng- 
land had not accepted the mediation. She told the Czar 
that the question between her and the United States did not admit 
of mediation. But she did not wish to offend her powerful ally, and 
expressed a willingness to treat directly with the American commis- 
sioners. Such a course would give her a freer hand in the negotiation. 
After some delay the British ministry repeated the offer to Madison, 
and congress, accepting it for what it was worth, sent Clay and 
Jonathan Russell as additional commissioners of peace. England 
appointed three men of little prominence, Lord Gambier, Henry 
Goulburn, and Dr. Adams. The Americans took it as a slight that 
more capable men were not named, but the ministry expected to 
keep the negotiations well in hand. The commissioners began their 
labors at Ghent early in August, 1814. 

The Americans asked that impressments and the right of search 
be relinquished. The British replied with such demands that it 
seemed they did not desire peace. We were asked, for 
Ghe^nt^^^ ^ °^^ thing, to accept an Indian buffer state on our north- 
west as an offset to our attack on Canada. The war 
against Napoleon was then believed to be ended, the English people 
were elated, they had not heard of the better fighting of the Americans 
on the northern frontier in the third year of the war, and the result 
was stout demands on their part. The American commissioners 
reported the demands to Madison, who made them public. An out- 
burst of indignation ensued in nearly every part of the United States. 
Lord Castlereagh, the prime minister, seeing that the war would go 
on with more energy than before, concluded to modify his terms. 
England was exhausted by the long war on the continent and needed 
peace more than she needed to triumph over America. Castlereagh 
had begun to see that the continental nations would be secretly against 
England in adjusting the affairs of Europe, and he did not wish at 
that time to be embarrassed by a transatlantic war. So it happened 
that as the American commissioners were about to go home the British 
abandoned the worst of their conditions. From day to day they 
gave up still more, with the result that finally a treaty was signed, 
December 24, in which neither side gained or lost. It provided 
for the cessation of arms, the restoration of conquests, 
Sien^dD ^^*^ ^ Commission to settle the long-disputed Canadian 
24, 1814. * boundary. The matters for which we went to war were 
not mentioned; but as England was to reduce her navy 
with the coming of peace, the question of impressment was no longer 
important. February 15, 1815, the treaty was unanimously approved 


by the senate. For the first time since the constitution was adopted 
the United States faced the future without anxiety about their foreign 


.v^J> New England Discontent 

New England generally chafed under Southern control. Non- 
importation, embargo, and non-intercourse affected her business 
prosperity more than the South's. Moreover, it seemed 
likely that she, a trading community, would continue to be Isolation of 
outclassed by the agricultural section. Every new merciX" 
state admitted to the union added to the strength of states, 
the rural classes. New York itself, once fair fighting 
ground for the commercial class, was becoming a farmer's state 
through the settlement of her rich western lands. What hope was 
there that commercial New England should get justice from this 
powerful aggregation directed by the authors of the existing poHcies ? 
Probably the majority of New Englanders were not concerned with 
this question, but it rankled in the breasts of the federalists. Their 
only hope of return to power was in the defeat of the republicans, 
which seemed impossible, or in separation from the union. In 1803- 
1804 Pickering and his friends planned for separation with the support 
of New York, but they failed through the opposition of Hamilton 
(see page 300). When war against England threatened, 
they took up the plan again, this time hoping to join ^^^'^ °^ 
New England with Canada under British protection, ^J.^^^~ 
thus making a great state in which the New England states Federalists, 
would have good opportunity for commercial and political 
expansion. Not all New Englanders favored this plan, but the radical 
federalists cherished it and hoped to utilize the popular discontent 
to carry it through. 

Their attitude was known in England. Did not Pickering keep 
his friend Rose, minister for the early months of 1808, well informed? 
And did not Jackson revel in federalist flattery from 
Baltimore to Boston? In 1809 came John Henry to JE^""^!^*" 
Boston, an agent of the governor of Canada, seeking content into 
to learn just what could be expected in that quarter. Disunion. 
His letters were discreet, but they reveal great dissatis- 
faction on the part of the leading federalists there. In 1812 Foster, 
the English minister in Washington, was in close cooperation with 
the federalists, they urging that England should not yield to the admin- 
istration. If war came, said they, it would be short and disastrous 
to America, and the administration would be overthrown. And 
when war was declared, 34 federalists in the house, 19 of them from 
New England, issued an address declaring the war unjustifiable and 
defending England's attitude. All this was well considered in London, 
and as a token of appreciation the ministry in establishing the com- 

336 THE WAR OF 1812 

mercial blockade exempted the New England ports north of New 
London. When Madison called on the states for quotas of militia 
in 181 2, Massachusetts and Connecticut refused to raise troops to 
serve out of the state, but took steps to equip their forces for state 
defense. There was much unemployed money in the New England 
banks ; probably half the specie in the country was in New England. 
Yet the war bonds of the government could hardly be sold there, 
less than $3,000,000 being disposed of, while the Middle states took 
nearly $35,000,000. With this opposition the president could not 
deal. He was forced to conduct the war without much aid from the 
states east of the Hudson. 

Early in the war the federalists in Essex cou,nty, Massachusetts, 
issued an address written by Senator Pickering for a convention 
to consider the situation within the state. There was 
Hartford much animated discussion in other parts of the state. 
Called. b^t a number of conservative federalists in Boston, led 

by Dexter, secretary of war under Adams, checked the 
movement in that city, and the